Wilby Hall saved

Yarrawonga Chronicle - - Front Page - BY JARED LOUGHNAN

The Wilby com­mu­nity have wel­comed Moira Shire Coun­cil’s de­ci­sion to pri­ori­tise bud­geted funds for the re­me­di­a­tion of the Wilby Com­mu­nity Hall avoid­ing the pos­si­bil­ity of it be­ing de­mol­ished.

At Moira Shire Coun­cil’s or­di­nary Oc­to­ber 24 meet­ing coun­cil voted to al­lo­cate $285,000 in the 2018/19 bud­get for projects in the Wilby dis­trict. The money was bud­geted in cap­i­tal works for the fi­nan­cial year.

Mem­bers of the Wilby com­mu­nity iden­ti­fied three projects as a pri­or­ity for the town in­clud­ing; re­place­ment of the Wilby bridge into the recre­ation re­serve, dust sup­pres­sion and re­pairs to the Wilby Com­mu­nity Hall.

The bud­get al­lo­ca­tion was in­suf­fi­cient to de­liver all three com­mu­nity projects ac­cord­ingly so coun­cil of­fi­cers sought feed­back via a sur­vey from res­i­dents of Wilby and dis­tricts, in­clud­ing Pel­lue­bla, Al­monds, Boweya North, Boom­ah­noomoonah and east of three chain road in Telford and Tungamah re­gard­ing their project pri­or­i­ties.

The con­sul­ta­tion oc­curred via a let­ter ask­ing res­i­dents to rank their pri­or­i­ties from 1 (most im­por­tant) to 3 (least im­por­tant). Res­i­dents were also asked to pro­vide ad­di­tional com­ments

Wilby Com­mu­nity Hall spokesper­son He­len White said af­ter a long cam­paign by the Wilby com­mu­nity to re­tain the won­der­ful old hall the lo­cals are pleased with Moira Shire Coun­cil’s de­ci­sion to make the nec­es­sary re­pairs to bring their hall up to stan­dard.

“Four and a half years ago Moira Shire ad­vised the Wilby Hall Sec­tion 86 Com­mit­tee of a pro­posal to de­mol­ish the ex­ist­ing 60 year old build­ing,” He­len said.

“This de­ci­sion was brought about be­cause the hall was in need of some re­pairs af­ter wa­ter dam­age to the front wall and some white ant ac­tiv­ity in the cloak room.

“The hall com­mit­tee and the com­mu­nity were dis­mayed at the prospect of los­ing their large hall and com­mu­nity cen­ter.

“It is such an im­por­tant hub for the resi- dents and is still reg­u­larly used. There are six old time dances each year, twice weekly yoga classes, monthly so­cial morn­ings, CFA Fire plan­ning ses­sions, Wilby Mo­tor­sports Club meet­ings, the Wilby Cam­p­draft Club and Wilby Ten­nis Club meet­ings and other com­mu­nity meet­ings.

“The hall proved its value in Au­gust this year when the Wilby Cam­p­draft Club held a huge fundrais­ing draft at the Wilby Re­serve and pro­vided din­ner for 150 peo­ple at the hall which raised $37,000 for the McGrath Foun­da­tion.

“Other re­cent events in­clude a huge Back to Wilby School event, a CWA in­ter­na­tional dis­play fea­tur­ing arte­facts from PNG, folk con­certs, live shows put on by Al­le­gro, a movie night, car boot sales, trivia nights etc.

“As a re­sult of reg­u­lar sub­mis­sions to Moira Shire Coun­cil­lors re­quest­ing as­sis­tance, fund­ing was fi­nally al­lo­cated in this year’s cap­i­tal works bud­get for Wilby in­fra­struc­ture de­vel­op­ments. “

Ms White said the re­sults of the sur­vey showed Wilby Com­mu­nity Hall as the top pri­or­ity fol­lowed closely by re­open­ing the bridge to light ve­hi­cle traf­fic at the main en­trance to the Wilby Re­serve.

The bridge has been re­stricted to only pedes­trian ac­cess since Au­gust 2017, which has meant that all ve­hi­cles needed to drive 3km to en­ter via the race track’s gate to get to the main pub­lic park area.

In adopt­ing the rec­om­men­da­tion to use the funds to firstly re­pair the Wilby Com­mu­nity Hall and with any monies re­main­ing to re­pair the bridge, many of the coun­cil­lors made com­ment on the sat­is­fac­tory out­come for Wilby and the suc­cess of the process of con­sult­ing the com­mu­nity through the sur­vey. Com­ing events at Wilby in­clude:

This Satur­day’s Lake Mul­wala Rod Run Nostalgia Drag Meet from 11am-3pm.

Sun­day, Oc­to­ber 28; Af­ter­noon Tea Dance at Wilby & Dis­trict Memo­rial Hall from 1pm un­til 5pm.

Fri­day, Novem­ber 23; A Drought Re­lief BBQ from 6pm as a get to­gether for all the com­mu­nity in the cur­rent dif­fi­cult year. Satur­day, De­cem­ber 1; The Great Vic­to­rian Bike Ride visit Wilby Recre­ation Re­serve for a rest stop be­tween 7am and 10:15am.

The Wilby and dis­trict com­mu­nity have voted for their com­mu­nity hall to re­ceive the lion’s share of bud­geted cap­i­tal works funds for the area.

The Wilby Com­mu­nity Hall is of­ten used for larges gath­er­ing such as this oc­ca­sion of the WDTA re­union.

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