17 May 2017 - Media release
Landscaping project for Rushworth Rail Reserve
Rushworth Rail Reserve will soon benefit from new landscaping with the installation of 500 indigenous plant species.
Goulburn Valley Water (GVW) will facilitate the planting as part of an agreement negotiated with the Rushworth Action Group for the Environment (RAGE).
The agreement between the parties will see a combination of wildflower and understory species planted by members of the community, including schools, along with GVW staff who will conduct the planting as a water education event.
GWV will purchase the plants and tree guards, and RAGE will apply for funding from the Rushworth District Community Bank and other sources to pay for landscaping materials such as edging, soil, mulch and bobcat hire to prepare the site.
Once the project is complete, RAGE will maintain the landscaping, with council’s Parks and Gardens team continuing to provide a level of maintenance throughout the reserve.
The council-owned Rushworth Rail Reserve is a significant area of land that includes a skate park and walking/cycling track. The reserve will, in the future, be integrated into the Rushworth to Murchison rail trail as part of the Waranga Trail. This trail will serve as a visitor attraction offering an environmental and historical walking/cycling experience.
Port of Echuca Railway Spur
The 800-metre Port of Echuca Railway spur will be removed from council’s asset register from the 2018/19 financial year as it will be potentially integrated into a new walking and cycling track to enable its future preservation and assist in telling the story of Echuca’s “Meeting of the Whistles”.
Design and delivery of the new walking and cycling track will be scheduled to occur with either the renewal of the current walking and cycling track that runs beside the railway line when it is due or when other works at Aquatic Reserve area deem it is required. As such, the project will be considered by council as part of the normal budget process at the appropriate time.
Originally opened in 2002 with multiple funding bodies behind the project, the railway line operated for a short time only due to sweeping changes to the rail industry that saw it unable to meet new national safety and quality standards. While the railway line has, in recent years, been assessed as in good condition, recreation planning for Aquatic Reserve has identified it as a barrier to connectivity and increased use of the area. It is also a trip hazard, often requiring safe crossing points to be made.
In the interim, interpretive signage telling the story of the “Meeting of the Whistles” and thanking the many individuals and organisations involved in the successful efforts to reinstate the Port of Echuca Railway spur, will be installed.
Great War Grant for Tongala
Tongala Community Activities Centre will receive a Great War (WW1) Community Grant of $742.08 in support of its World War One and Soldier Settler display.
The exhibition will contain extracts, items and displays from local businesses and community groups as well as from Melbourne’s Old Treasury Building, “Soldier On” Exhibition, highlighting stories about WW1 soldier settlers.
The exhibition will also highlight the contribution of Tongala’s diggers as well as the mainly city-based returned soldiers who relocated to take advantage of the government’s Soldier Settler Scheme.
Council introduced the Great War (WW1) Community Grant program as a one-off funding program.
Three local groups to benefit from Responsive Grants Program
An amount of $2,280 from council’s Responsive Grants Program will go to three local community groups to help with costs associated with marketing and events as follows:
- Njernda Aboriginal Corporation will receive $1,000 to assist with running costs of events during NAIDOC Week and the purchase of NAIDOC Week merchandise for children’s show bags.
- Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation will receive $900 to assist with costs to engage a local business to design a logo for the Ngu Ngai Knowledge Centre.
- Gunbower & District Development Group Inc will receive $380 to assist with costs to host a community dinner to celebrate and launch projects completed.
The Responsive Grants Program provides funding for community initiatives that meet specified criteria. An amount of $50,000 is allocated in the 2016/17 budget.