Heartfelt plea to skaters

GRIND: The Garden of the Grieving Mother at the Arch of Victory was in planning for more than two years before its opening in February, but has since been damaged after it was used by skateboarders and cyclists as a playground. Picture: Kate Healy

GRIND: The Garden of the Grieving Mother at the Arch of Victory was in planning for more than two years before its opening in February, but has since been damaged after it was used by skateboarders and cyclists as a playground. Picture: Kate Healy

Shattered Garden of the Grieving Mother committee members have called on skateboarders and cyclists to stop using the park after the base of its statue was damaged for the second time this week.

Chairman Garry Snowden hoped teenagers would listen to his message that the Alfredton park was not a place for playing but a place to reflect upon the sacrifice and loss of Ballarat families in war.

“We don’t want to compromise the garden by having to put in fencing or signage,” he said.

“I realise the damage is being done by kids, it’s not malicious vandalism. 

“But it’s my hope that parents and teachers get the word out to teenagers that it’s not a place for skateboarding.”

It comes after the Sporting Motorists Association donated $3000 to the garden’s committee in a much-needed leg-up.

Member Margaret Clifford said the association decided to hand over the money as the memorial was a worthy centrepiece of Ballarat’s history.