Golden Square residents fights pool closure

MORE than 70 supporters of the Save the Golden Square Swimming Pool last night attended a community meeting. 

The Golden Square Football clubrooms were filled as hot and bothered members continued to voice their concerns about the closure of the popular pool. 

City of Greater Bendigo mayor Lisa Ruffell, manager of Recreation Patrick Jess, Member for Bendigo West Maree Edwards and Chewton Pool Inc secretary Rose Darling attended the meeting. 

At the end of last year the City of Greater Bendigo staff recommended the closure of the Golden Square pool and another at Long Gully because of the high cost of maintenance and lack of attendees.

At the meeting it was announced that a total of 1779 people had signed the petition to re-open the pool. 

Cr Ruffell assured the community that the council was listening to the concerns community members had about the swimming pool. 

She said discussions about the pool would be held over the next two weeks but nothing could be done until a report on the pool was completed. 

“There is a process,” Cr Ruffell said. “If the money is there, the commitment is there and if the pool is visible then we will make it work.” 

Bendigo West member Maree Edwards advised supporters of the pool that there were other avenues the group should pursue. 

“As a community and as a group sometimes you have to look to the future rather than the past,” she said.

Ms Edwards said she supported the group and hoped the City of Greater Bendigo and the community could work together to resolve the issue. 

“The demographic of Golden Square is changing, a lot more families are moving to Golden Square and I think there is a good case socially as well to open the pool,” she said. “There are other ways of getting the pool open.”

Chewton Pool secretary Rose Darling also spoke about the campaign her community went on after the Mount Alexander Shire Council decided to close the pool in 2009.  

She spoke to residents about her fight and offered steps the group could take next.

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