Snake pit finally gets slashed

Gatton local Wes Walker campaigned for council to organise mowing on 41 Railway Street, claiming the site could be infested with snakes. PHOTOS: JACOB HAYDEN

Gatton resident Wes Walker is celebrating after successfully campaigning for a Railway Street property to be mowed, believing the overgrown lot was likely infested with snakes.

Mr Walker said he watched closely as the vegetation on 41 Railway Street grew up to 1.5 metres in height.

“I’ve been watching this and watching this,” Mr Walker said.

“It’s definitely a risk to the public… I’m not game enough to walk through there.”

The site, formerly the Imperial Hotel which burned down in 2015, is now an empty lot which neighbours a gym and automotive retailer.

“Snakes are active at night, this is right beside a gym and Supercheap when they’re open late Thursday night,” Mr Walker said.

Mr Walker attempted to contact the real estate in charge of the property to organise mowing, to no avail.

After erecting a sign at the site which read ‘Gatton Snake Pit’ on Monday February 26, Mr Walker said he was approached by Lockyer Valley Regional Council (LVRC) Mayor Tanya Milligan and three other people.

On Thursday February 29 LVRC organised for the site to be mowed.

An LVRC spokesperson said they responded to a public complaint made in late January 2024 and spoke with the property owners about the overgrown vegetation.

“It is the responsibility of private landowners to ensure their property is well maintained at all times and does not become overgrown,” the spokesperson said.

“Community members can report snake sightings on public land to Council on 1300 005 872, and Council will erect signage at the site warning the public of that occurrence.

Mr Walker said there were double standards for some ratepayers when the Railway Street site was allowed to grow to such an extreme.

“So many ratepayers have approached me and said they got warnings to mow their blocks of land,” he said.

“It’s quite obvious we’ve got two standards in this town.”