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Place attachment and visitation of Fern Tree Park and Bower


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Andrusko, K 2010 , 'Place attachment and visitation of Fern Tree Park and Bower', Honours thesis, University of Tasmania.

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Fern Tree Park and Bower (FTPB), Tasmania was chosen to study the relationship
between Mount Wellington and its visitors. The study of visitor's sense of place for
FTPB was incorporated into a use and values survey. The use and values survey was
undertaken to provide information for the development of a master plan for FTPB.
Natural resource management and cultural heritage management literature supports
the inclusion of sense of place in planning and management of natural-setting
recreation and cultural heritage sites. This research included measures of place
attachment and motivations for visiting, and assessed the important attributes of
FTPB sense of place using multiple methods. The research was conducted using
questionnaires, interviews and content analyses.
The results showed local residents were more attachment to FTPB then non-locals.
Other factors affecting place attachment levels were concern for management issues,
the motivations of 'nature' and 'solitude' for visiting, and appreciation of restorative
qualities of the site. Local residents preferred to visit for solitude, whereas non-locals
preferred to visit the site to be with others. This pattern was not found in the
literature. Local residents valued historical aspects of the site, whereas non-locals
preferred visual aesthetics. Recreation, vegetation and psychologically-restorative
attributes were the favourite qualities of FTPB. During the early period of FTPB site
from the 1870s to early 1900s the Bower was used as a picnic and beauty spot, and
fern trees and picnic shelters were the most valued features.
Results showed use at the site is increasing. Walking was by far the most popular
recreational activity. Water catchment infrastructure at Silver Falls, dog-walking,
mountain biking and parking were the most frequently raised management issues.
'Keep as is' was the most frequent recommendation for the site. One interviewee
suggested FTPB is for 'nature lovers' rather than users desiring high-quality facilities
and the results supported this claim. To further summarise sense of place for the site
a second round of research was recommended. Taking statements thought to
characterise sense of place from the survey responses and having FTPB users rate

how much they agree with the statements was recommended to provide succinct
expressions that characterise people-place relationships at FTPB. Recommendations
were given for the development of a site master plan including prioritising important
values of the natural environment over provision of facilities, and curbing peak usage
periods to reduce site pressures.

Item Type: Thesis - Honours
Authors/Creators:Andrusko, K
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Copyright 2010 the Author - The University is continuing to endeavour to trace the copyright
owner(s) and in the meantime this item has been reproduced here in good faith. We
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