For years, Lake Burrumbeet was a drawcard for families looking to cool off in the summer heat, for boating enthusiasts, anglers and campers.
It was a very popular venue through the warmer weather and offered an oasis just an eight-minute drive from the heart of Ballarat.
It was bone dry during the crippling drought of a decade ago and, despite it being refilled, has never really returned to its glory days.
Now it is essentially being left to rot.
The fact it is now a haven for antisocial behaviour and litter bugs is not helping the reputation of Lake Burrumbeet, which is actually a world class area for wildlife.
How such a natural wilderness is allowed to be treated in such a disrespectful manner beggars belief. Who are these people who think it’s their right to treat such a beautiful part of this region like a tip? Why do they think it’s okay to trash the lake foreshore and former camping groups almost every weekend?
It’s no wonder the families and those who once utilised Lake Burrumbeet for boating and fishing activities have essentially turned their back on the lake … they’re too scared of these hooligans who continually thumb their noses at authority.
Hopefully a plea by the Friends of Lake Burrumbee group for authorities to start looking after the lake is actually acted upon.
“We want it to be a world class area for wildlife which is connected with birdlife,” Friends of Lake Burrumbeet spokeswoman Susan Moodie said.
“It is home to 13 species of bat, it used to have eel, there used to be platypus, there are still some turtles around.
“We need to say why it is important and the facilities need to reflect the beauty of the place.”
Ms Moodie said since the City of Ballarat handed the responsibility of the lake to the state, “the management has been shocking”. “There have been three management plans, the first in 1986. None have been implemented.”
Some authority – anyone – needs to take responsibility for not only managing Lake Burrumbeet, but also policing the bad behaviour that happens out there so regularly.
We need to take a stand so this area does not become an ugly wasteland, shunned by everyone except the hoons. Much like the work carried out to rejuvenate Lake Wendouree, we need to bring the sparkle back into the jewel that is Lake Burrumbeet.