Complaints about illegal dumping and fires at Rochester's Aysons Reserve have led Campaspe Shire to hold a meeting about its future.ELAINE COONEY January 9, 2013 4:23am
Bendigo residents (on boat) Nicholas Davis, "Snaz" Barver, Alex Benjamin, (in water) Ella Flood, Kasey Boston and Matthew White enjoyed spending time at Aysons Reserve last week.
Rochester Ward councillor Leigh Wilson will meet with concerned residents near Aysons Reserve next month to discuss its future.
Cr Wilson said he visited the reserve on Wednesday when he received a call from a resident near the reserve about illegal dumping and fires.
Cr Wilson said in the past, Campaspe Shire received similar complaints and said it had been working to rectify issues.
‘‘It’s not an easy fix as it (the reserve) is crown land,’’ he said.
Campaspe Shire services the toilet facility and maintains the grounds.
‘‘I would hate to see the reserve locked up but if we can’t work out some good policy then worst-case scenario (is) we would have to look at shutting out camping,’’ he said.
Cr Wilson said he was concerned that the reserve might be a cost burden on ratepayers and would like to do a community survey on how much money the reserve was bringing to Rochester.
‘‘I don’t think we are getting enough money from the people staying there,’’ he said.
However, reserve visitor Gary Donaldson said he did his shopping daily in Rochester and Elmore.
‘‘Everyone goes in (to town) and buys stuff,’’ he said.
Fellow reserve visitor Debbie Monti said many people were going to town for parts when their boats broke down, while Des Rhook said he spends weeks at a time at the reserve and said he always does his shopping in Rochester.
Cr Wilson said during his visit to the reserve he and a member of the Elmore Fire Brigade saw two illegal fires, which campers were told to extinguish.
‘‘There only needs to be one fire and it would definitely result in a loss of property and potentially a loss of life,’’ he said.
He said he noticed one abandoned tent as well as a portable toilet surrounded by a tent that appeared to be abandoned.
Mr Wilson said other campers were trying to contact the owner of the toilet so they could remove it.
Cr Wilson said he saw evidence of people staying at the reserve on a long-term basis, which was illegal.
‘‘While people use this facility, what about our local caravan park where people pay money?’’ he said.
When asked if he would prefer people chose to pay for the Rochester Caravan Park than use the free facility he said he would ‘‘rather see a balance’’.
He said he was unaware if Campaspe Shire was seeking to purchase the land from the State Government.
He said flood repairs planned for the toilet block would still go ahead in the reserve as money was allocated to it.
As well as an abandoned box of rubbish at the outskirts of the reserve, he believed one caravan to be in breach of the health act as the grey water pipe was near the river.
Loyal Eagle Sue Dolling will play her 450th game for Mansfield tomorrow.
Although still not at their best, Mulwala have finished on top of the Murray League ladder after a comfortable victory over Cobram.
The International Guide Jamboree will take place at Lake Somerset, South East Queensland from September 25 to October 3, for Guides aged 10-17 years, and will be hosted by Girl Guides Australia.
FOR Echuca South Primary School, delivering ‘meals on wheels’ has been a long tradition.
ROCHESTER and Elmore emergency services united to help save a Mathoura man’s life on Friday afternoon after a two-vehicle collision on the Northern Hwy.
Kyabram under pressure to maintain vital top three spot
The Seymour sub-branch of the RSL needs information on local soldiers during World War I.
Berrigan public decides drainage works location
EARTHCOTE Events boss Spiro Boursinos has slammed allegations his annual Pyalong festival is anything but a safe and well organised function.
Strathmerton Cricket Club star all-rounder Luke Carter has been named as captain of the 2014-15 Victorian Country Cricket League (VCCL) Team of the Year.
Cancer claims one of its fiercest combatants.
School's in for farming students
The News magazines are online - read high quality magazines in your time. Check in regularly for the latest editions.
Riverine Herald's well regarded locally produced magazines. They're now online, so you can read them whenever and wherever you like.
Search for published and unpublished photos from McPherson Media Group newspapers and magazines. All our photos are available to purchase.
Place an advertisement in any one of McPherson Media Group's local newspapers.