St James Park at 3 Burwood Road in Hawthorn has been a valued green space for more than 160 years.

We drafted a master plan to manage and improve the features of this historic park. We invited our community to provide feedback on the plan in February and early March 2024.

We'll now review community feedback and develop a final master plan for Council to adopt later this year.

Read more about the draft master plan below.

About the St James Park Master Plan

After consultation with our community in April 2022, we drafted the master plan to help us:

  • manage and maintain this historic park
  • protect the park’s character, trees, design and heritage
  • improve key features, such as furniture, signage and the cenotaph (memorial monument)
  • preserve the ANZAC Day memorial site
  • find a suitable way to use the former pétanque green area in a way that meets community expectations.

Read more about the first stage of consultation.

The draft master plan was shaped by:

  • historical research
  • input from heritage and landscape experts
  • site analysis with Council officers and arborists
  • feedback from people who live or work near the park
  • suggestions from regular users of the park
  • community views about St James Park.

About St James Park

St James Park has been a valued green space for the Hawthorn community for more than 160 years. It has kept most of its 19th-century tree-lined avenues and path layout. It also has sports facilities, a playground and a war memorial. These features are used by:

  • sports clubs for lawn bowls, cricket and AFL games
  • community members for recreation activities, such as dog walking and picnics
  • the general public for local events, including the ANZAC Day memorial service and Council’s Summer in the Park
  • Hawthorn West Primary School for their sporting events and lunchtime sessions on the oval.

Our aims

St James Park is already established and well used by our community, which means that it doesn't need a significant change to the layout and design.

The master plan aims to make sure the management of the park and any future developments:

  • conserves and celebrates the park’s built and natural heritage character
  • conserves the historic tree avenues and specimen trees (which have a unique shape, texture or colour that distinguishes it from other trees)
  • continues to support the community’s use and enjoyment of recreational activities at the park
  • provides facilities that improve the enjoyment of the park, playground and public spaces.

The pétanque green area will also be open for everyone’s use and will contribute to the park’s heritage character.

Our proposed actions

See below the proposed actions as part of the master plan. This is in addition to maintaining the park for current activities that include organised sport and casual uses, such as walking in the park or socialising.

  • Develop a Tree Management Plan to protect heritage trees and make sure new trees are resilient to climate change.

  • Redevelop the former pétanque green area to complement the park’s historic character and provide a new green area for informal recreation.

  • Restrict the construction of new structures or buildings in the park.

  • Update park furniture, bins and drinking fountains to be more accessible and comfortable.

  • Replant existing garden beds to complement the history and character of the park.

  • Plant trees to provide more natural shade and habitats for wildlife.

  • Investigate harvesting water from the Hawthorn Main Drain.

  • Design signs or artworks to highlight the park's history (indigenous and recent history).

Proposed facilities

Public furniture

See below the new locations for public furniture and plans to renew existing furniture. Read the marker descriptions to find out more.

Marker descriptions

Other facilities

Select the hotspots below to find about other changes we'll make to improve the park's facilities.

‘The Green’ concept plan (former pétanque green)

The master plan includes a new public open space that is open to all, providing a variety of new passive and active recreation opportunities.

It includes new activities and spaces such as:

  • a half basketball court
  • sensory walks through native gardens where children can explore and see, smell and touch native plants
  • retreat seating areas with city views
  • children's 'hidden' nook seating area with informal logs and large boulders
  • new rows of trees to reflect the historic visual connection between Lennox Street and Honour Avenue
  • an open lawn area
  • barbecue area with seating and views of the city
  • new access opportunities from St James Park (east and south).

Select the hotspots below to learn about the locations of these initiatives.

Proposed new plantings

Select the hotspots below to learn about the avenue renewal and new planting opportunities.

How we invited you to have your say

We invited our community to share their thoughts and help us understand if the draft master plan met your expectations.

The community could have their say by completing the survey below or joining one of our drop-in sessions near the war memorial at St James Park.

Drop-in sessions

Wednesday 14 February 2024 03:00 pm to 05:00 pm

Saturday 17 February 2024 12:00 pm to 02:00 pm