Ewingsdale Community Association

President’s Report

2014 – 2015

This year has been both challenging and productive, and has engaged the broader community in a range of activities and projects. Looking back, it has been a very busy year which involved a core of supportive and committed Ewingsdale community members working together, determined to maintain our community amenity.

Projects for the year:

* The ongoing challenge associated with the Seniors Living development proposal has occupied much of our time. There is still no resolution, but throughout the year active community lobbying of councillors, excellent submissions, a survey and community meetings with councillors, achieved a rescission of the initial approval of the proposal and the opportunity to press councillors for an acceptable outcome. Hopefully a acceptable decision will be made in the next few months.

This ongoing challenge has been worth the effort as it has galvanised our views on what we want for our community, which is being surrounded by development.

A big thanks to all community members involved in this project. A special thanks to Kirsty, Colin, Peter, Fae, George, Mick, Andrew, Lorissa, Elisabeth and Charles.

* While the Seniors Living proposal has been our major focus, the additional developments in Ewingsdale including The Farm and the Hospital will add significantly to traffic congestion on Ewingsdale Road. Infrastructure generally will be a challenge. As a community we will need to actively lobby Council and politicians to upgrade Ewingsdale Road and ensure traffic management is improved. Roundabouts at the Hospital, McGettigans Lane, and the BP fuel station may assist, but will not solve the traffic issues long-term.

* The deep gutter in front of the Hall and Church is an ongoing issue. It was filled with gravel earlier in the year but a heavy rain event left us with the same problem. At one point the highway upgrade construction group were approached to fill and seal the gutter. They indicted initially that they could possibly do the work. That now seems unlikely. Further approaches to Council will be necessary.

* A successful film and pizza night was held at the Hall as a community get-together. Although the number of attendees was not large, everyone there enjoyed the gathering and the pizzas. This could be an annual event. Thanks Lorissa.

* During the year the Hall kitchen was refurbished. We now have a wonderful facility which has made catering much more efficient. Thank you Andrew for organising this project and sourcing the equipment.

* The Hall was painted and minor renovations both inside and out were undertaken. Our 100+ year old Hall is in a very good state. Thanks to Andrew, Fae and George. The Hall and the Church are both extremely important heritage buildings in a designated heritage precinct and are Ewingsdale icons.

* During the past year the St. Columba Church was painted the same colour as the Hall and recently celebrated its centenary.

* The link between the Hall and Church was further strengthened by laying a path between them to enable wedding groups to access both buildings without difficulty during wet weather. Thanks to Andrew, George and Fae for co-ordinating this project.

* The Christmas gathering for the Ewingsdale community was held again last December. The families and children who attended had an enjoyable time. The fire engine was again a winner. Thanks to Lorissa for organising this yearly activity

* Our financial position is very strong. At the April meeting of the Progress Association our balance was around $58,000.00. This will enable further upgrades to proceed, including installation of an additional water tank to ensure a substantial water supply is available, even in dry seasons. We are also considering improvement to the acoustics in the hall. Thanks to treasurer Peter for managing the finances.

* Andrew has been developing a special area under trees at the rear of the Hall as a wedding setting. This project, together with the planting of grass and native species of shrubs is creating a very attractive site for wedding ceremonies which are our major source of income. Thanks Andrew.

* As well as wedding events, the Hall is still being used for a range of activities by locals. Functions.

* It is disappointing that it is difficult to attract large community support at social functions in the hall organised by our Association. Conversations around this matter have resulted in suggestions which include more film nights and music evenings. Further discussions need to be held to assess community needs.

* As Andrew has indicated, he may be giving up his role mid year. He has been a driving force in managing the multiple activities and projects related to the Hall. His commitment to this role and his achievements have been outstanding for the past 6‐7 years. Having been involved in many of the projects Andrew has taken on, I am well aware of the time and effort he has given to his management role. A big thanks to Andrew on behalf of our Association and the community for your efforts. Well done. If Andrew does relinquish this role, then this position will need to be filled by a competent and committed person as it is critical to the hall’s continued success.

Thanks to all for your support during the year. It has been a year of challenges, disappointments and successes which have strengthened our community to continue the fight to achieve the best possible outcomes.

Allen Lind

President Ewingsdale Progress and Public Hall Association 5th May 2015

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