To the people of Macedon Ranges, Hanging Rock is an exceptional place. It is the soul of the region.
Its power comes from its natural state. That state creates a mysticism that has attracted our imaginations.
The imaginations of artists have also been captured. Joan Lindsay with her iconic work Picnic at Hanging Rock captured that mysticism. The film of the book captured the imagination of the whole country.
We, as a community, have lived that dream.
When we were councillors of the Macedon Ranges, we understood the importance of Hanging Rock. That importance lay in its undeveloped state because that was 'the imagination' of the public. That did not mean it was not used to bring people to our region to discover it.
There were the Hanging Rock races, concerts of the world's greatest musicians and the Age Harvest Picnic. They played on the 'mysticism' and natural state of the site.
Commercial development will destroy the character of this special place. The last thing the Macedon Ranges needs is another conference or health centre. We have many located in appropriate places.The council should abandon this ill-considered development and concentrate on maintaining the naturalness of this site and its surrounds. In our view, that accords with the wishes of the majority of our community, and is the decent thing to do. Councillors, do the right thing.