A lot has happened since our last newsletter and it’s all good news for us and the
foreshore. There has been a tremendous amount of effort by the association and its committee, friends and allies of the foreshore over the last two years to get us to this current position. I think it’s quite inspirational what has collectively been achieved in this time. I am impressed by the effect that the reserve has had on so many lives.
I thank each and everyone involved, especially the LLBA committee and Russel Bradley who has been a real partner with me on our meetings and journeys with DSE. I have enjoyed the process and challenge so far and whilst I acknowledge that there is a lot more to do, I believe that what we have so far is a resounding achievement for the common people who are committed to reason and common sense approaches to environmental issues that face our coastline. Thank you to all who have made this possible in such a short time and regards to you all.
John Owens President
Bass Coast Shire Council Heritage Overlay No.#120 Bass Coast Council approved the Heritage Overlay (HO) for the Lang Lang Foreshore at the council meeting on 18th April 2007. This is great news as the boatsheds, seawall and W. G. Sullivan building and 20 metres surrounding these structures are preserved as significant cultural heritage structures for the shire. See the following link; http://www.basscoast.vic.gov.au/ and look under Volume 4 - Heritage Place Data Sheets - Lang Lang to Loch. Thank you for your support for our submission to council. It was a great effort by all involved, especially those who obtained signatures for the petition. Council were impressed with the volume of information we gave them, the number of signatures and the supporting letters. The HO means that permits are required from council for demolition and building of these structures. What is important is that the HO does not regulate any decorative or restoration processes to the buildings. Quite simply, the HO stipulates that a permit is required for building or demolition. My understanding from council is that permits for demolition will be difficult to obtain from council. As the HO states that the significance of these buildings is that they represent typical seaside resorts for the 1950s, then any restoration and decoration we do to these buildings should, as far as possible, be in the 1950s style where practical. I encourage all boatshed members to keep this in mind as we continue to improve the foreshore area and buildings and make it a unique area. The council has approved our HO for the reserve as well as a number of other overlays within the Shire. However, there are a number of other HOs in the Shire that are under arbitration and negotiation and they will be finalised within a few months. After the arbitration process, all of the approved HOs will then be signed off by the Minister and this will occur later this year. In the meantime the structures at Lang Lang are protected by the Interim Heritage Overlay. Initially we thought that the Jetty was also included in the HO. Unfortunately, it is not included as there is overlap of administrative boundaries with Parks Victoria as they have jurisdiction up to the high water mark. So the tussle to keep the jetty structure is ongoing (see article further down). The HO on the buildings is only the second one on such structures granted in Victoria. The first one was the Brighton Bathing Boxes. So this is an outstanding result for our reserve and we are up there with the boxes at Brighton!!!!.
Our Gratitude: We would like to gratefully acknowledge the help of Bill Meares and Frank Maloney (Port Phillip Beach Box Association) for their assistance and advice during these meetings that we have attended over the last 12 months. They have been invaluable in guiding us through the negations and meetings with Port Phillip DSE. They will continue to be available to LLBA.
Our Gratitude:Our Gratitude: to the following for their support in our HO submission to council
• Professor Peter Joubert
• Ken Smith MP
• Councillor Veronica Dowman
• Lang Lang Township Committee
• Brighton Bathing Box Assoc.
• Port Phillip Beach Box Assoc.
• Niel Gunson (author of The Good Country, Cranbourne Shire which documents the history of the Lang Lang and surrounding areas, including the Foreshore Reserve and jetty)
• LLBA members who gathered 565 signatures from concerned citizens of Victoria for the support petition, this included 28 residents of French Island (thanks to Prof Joubert’s efforts)
Lang Lang Foreshore Committee of Management (COM) We have not had any meetings with DSE since October last year. We were due for a meeting in December 2006 but DSE were busy with bush fires.We finally had a meeting on 21st May this year. There were some interesting results which are summarisedbelow. DSE said they were not aware of the Bass Coast Shire Council’s Interim Heritage Overlay andthe council approval of the HO. DSE are not happy with the results of the pole trial at the Lang Lang beach. They will be seeking funding to do measurements to see if there has been any change on the beach since the poles were placed there. There were no visible changes in terms of beach build up or mangrove protection. The mangrove plants have not established and poles are being washed away. Mike Behnke , DSE, will organise measurements and continue monitoring the situation. DSE Port Phillip will no longer be involved with the Lang Lang Foreshore Reserve so we say farewell to Sally Burgess and Phillip Wierzbowski. Governance has moved to Gippsland DSE as of the 21st May so we will now be dealing with Mick Dortmans and Peter Merritt. John and Russel will meet Mick and Peter at the foreshore on 21st June to show them around, give some history and will continue bi-monthly meetings with DSE Gippsland to continue progress. We also met with GHD company (the consulting company that DSE uses to get advice on coastal erosion control measures) last November. GHD had recommended the use of recycled tyres to form a slanted wall that could be covered in sand and planted as an economical method of preventing erosion. DSE have approved this method and have undertaken to get the necessary approval from State and Federal EPA to use this “tyre wall” in a 50 metre trial on the beach. This has changed DSE’s focus from moving the boatsheds to protecting the seawall. The exact area is yet to be decided and the indications are that the trial will begin in a few months. A grant has been approved to start the re-design of the reserve. This is for the renovation of amenities, showers/toilets/laundry including the use of sustainable energy (solar etc), drainage, vegetation planting etc. The report of the structural audit that was done on all of the boatsheds in 2005 was tabled and LLBA now has a copy of that. Copies will be available from Bev & Laurie for boatshed owners. DSE have indicated to the Delta corporation (who use the road through the reserve to access their farm) that the road through the reserve will be closed to heavy transport from December this year and Delta will need to relocate and construct alternative access into their property. Lang Lang Foreshore Committee of Management (COM) An opportunity to participate: We continue to foster good relationships with COM as we will be working closely together to develop the reserve plan in the next 6 months. COM has invited one member of the LLBA committee to be present at their monthly meetings and this is a great step forward to working together. This representative will be a “guest” and will be able to participate in discussions etc, but have no voting rights within COM. There are two new COM members and John and Russel will meet them with Gippsland DSE on 21st June. LLBA committee has invited COM to a get-to-know-each-other meeting in August so that we can get a common ground established between the organisations and develop a clear vision for what we both want for the reserve and the foreshore. LLBA committee is very clear that not only are we concerned about the erosion issues affecting caravans and boatsheds alike, but also the broader issues facing both committees in the entire foreshore reserve and Western Port Bay. COM and DSE have succeeded in getting a grant of about $20,000 for designing the plan for the development of the reserve. Currently the proposal that LLBA will put to COM is that a sub-committee be formed between COM & LLBA to progress the reserve re-development plan. This is an opportunity for LLBA members to participate directly in this process. Therefore LLBA would want the assistance of two of its members to be part of this sub-committee to participate in the reserve re-development plan. Ideally we would be looking for people with experience in the areas of building & construction, energy sustainability, design, landscaping, engineering etc. It’s a great opportunity so please contact: Johnowens@netspace.net or mobile 0417147764 to register your interest.
The Jetty : Unfortunately, the jetty is now not included in the Heritage Overlay. Parks Victoria has tagged the jetty for demolition within the next few months. It is worth noting that this is the only jetty in Victoria that did not get any funding for repairs (all of the other structures received substantial funds for repair from Parks Victoria) and is the only jetty to be demolished. Bass Coast Council has been active in lobbying directly to the Minister (John Thwaites) to retain the jetty and have been seeking funds for its repair. Jack Dyt from Lang Lang COM has been extremely active in lobbying to keep the jetty and seeking funds to repair it. LLBA will support COM and council in anyway possible. We need to rally fast to protect this icon from demolition!! Photo Hilton Stone - Leader
WE have had a tremendous response for membership and LLBA now represents 85% of the boatshed licensees and long term caravan owners. This is a strong position when we are dealing with DSE. LLBA thanks you for you continued support. If you know any one who is not a member then please let Margaret Dorrien know and she will only be too pleased to have a chat with them.
For more details contact: The Lang Lang Boatshed Association
PO Box 245 Yarraville 3013 or call John Owens on 0417147764 or Russel Bradley on 0412540408