Miners Rest residents were out in force to celebrate the official opening of the community’s revamped park.
The renovated Miners Rest Community Park was officially opened with an indigenous smoke ceremony, followed by an address by Buninyong MP Geoff Howard on Tuesday.
The project has included the transformation of a local area of public space into a community park.
The area now features pathways, landscaping, a rotunda, shade structures, barbecues and a rebound wall for ball games.
A soldiers memorial that the land previously housed was also relocated and rededicated during the development.
The local community pitched in $15,000 to the cause, with a further $135,000 contributed by the City of Ballarat and $260,000 from the Victorian Government.
Resident Bill Loader, who has been living in the area for over 80 years said the work was a big improvement for which the community groups involved needed to be given credit. “I’ve been living here nearly since I was born. It’s certainly a big improvement,” he said.
Fellow resident Neville Norton also praised the revitalisation.
“It’s a big change, definitely for the better. It’s absolutely a credit to the community groups that have been pushing for it. Two years ago behind us was just Cyprus trees representing soldiers from the first world war. They outlived their usefulness and they were removed and all this has happened since.”
Treasurer of the Lyons Club Judy Earl said the club has been behind the project, working with the community and council in a process which has taken about three years.
“Some of the processes have been slow but others have been quite quick. Once we got the trees out and the avenue in then the progress just gradually happened,” she said.
Mr Howard said the improvements will enhance options for people to enjoy the outdoors and he expected to see others from outside the community enjoying them as well.
“People in Miners Rest will be able to make the most of these upgraded facilities, which include the new pathways, landscaping, a rotunda, shade structures, barbecues and a rebound wall for ball games,” he said.
“It’s important that people have opportunities to be involved in physical activity outdoors as we know it is one of the most effective ways to achieving a healthy lifestyle. I’d like to congratulate the local community for their support of this project, as they recognise that this rapidly growing community needs a place for people young and old to come together.”