Restore and Retain – a Story of Renewal

November 2009 Mount Alexander Shire Council (MASC) receives Aquatic Centre Feasibility Study recommending the closure of Chewton, Harcourt and Castlemaine pools
February 2010 Council conducts an information session on the aquatic facility proposal in Chewton, but refuses to discuss the proposed closure of the local outdoor pool
Residents commence a petition signed by 832 people
March 2010 Make a Splash Rally and children’s march to Chewton pool attended by school students and 80 locals angry about proposed closureFormation of Save Chewton Pool CommitteeChewton Primary School pupils design postcards and Postcard campaign begins

Banners appear across the area protesting closure

Petition and letter presented to MASC by Chewton residents

April 2010 500 submissions made to Council – 70% Shire residents support retention of Chewton poolLetters to Councillors and State MinistersSave Chewton Pool Fundraising Concert and Ugly Man finalists presented 350 attend

Seafood Banquet and Auction

$10,000 raised in one week!

FOI request to MASC re data on expenditure on pool and pool records

May 2010 Letters to media and adverts in local papersLeaflet mailout to Shire residentsThe campaign goes to Facebook – Chewton Splash

Bumper stickers bloom

June 2010 Make a Splash Rally with Lady Godiva – Chewton and Harcourt – 300 people attendMayor and Councillors agree to meet with representatives of Save Chewton Pool Committee
July 2010 Council releases condition report that states pool is serviceable but not a 25 year prospect27 July – Chewton residents convoy by coach to Council meeting.Council votes to demolish Chewton Pool
August 2010 Save Chewton Pool asks Victorian Trades Hall Council (VTHC) and Eureka Committee for supportIndividual meetings with Councillors to lobby for support to reverse decisionLiaison with Newstead Pool to understand model of community management
September 2010 MASC tenders demolition workLobbying continuesCommunity BBQ
October 2010 Formation of Chewton Pool IncOngoing discussions with CouncillorsLocal member takes up issue

Tent Embassy sets up at Chewton Pool to prevent demolition

Support from CFMEU and VTHC

MASC votes to defer demolition and to hand management of site back to DSE

Chewton Pool Inc propose to operate the pool and become the Crown Land Reserve Committee of Management for the site

November 2010 Preparation of Business Plan and for operation of the pool this seasonMASC refuses to reopen poolFundraiser concert at Theatre Royal Castlemaine

Open Gardens raise funds

State election interrupts process

December 2010 Art Auction with Rod Quantock raises $17,000Ugly Man Calendars for saleUgly Man Wine Series I selling well

Chewton Pool Inc meets with MASC and DSE to discuss potential community management

Pool remains empty despite letters to Council warning of possible damage to the structure

February 2011 Chewton Pool Inc. holds the “No Pool Pool Party”Council passes resolution to provide a contribution of $25,000 per annum for the ensuing three years towards the operation of Chewton pool, if the Department of Sustainability and Environment agrees to hand responsibility for the facility to a community committee of management. 
March 2011 Completion of Business Plan with risk management planning and engineering assessment.Business Plan forwarded to DSE to support a request for community management of the Crown Land Reserve containing the pool.
April 2011 Letter requesting Chewton Pool Inc. appointment to manage the pool off to Minister for Environment & Climate ChangeLocal Woodcarver Tom Taft donates wooden jewellery box to raffle – raising $600Frank Paul Carpenter Trust grant notified for training young people to staff pool
June 2011 Minister writes to Chewton Pool Inc. to accept management proposal for three years.Conditional on pool upgrades and safety audit.
July 2011 Chewton Pool Inc. accepts management conditions and is appointed pool manager for three years!Handover of keys and first inspection of siteXmas in July event
August 2011 Work begins on assessing the pipeworkSupporters BBQ held and new volunteers registerWorking bees commence on Saturday mornings
September 2011 Open Gardens raised $850 towards pool repairsRJ Ball Engineer oversees pipework repairsWorking bees continue

Pool Coordinator appointed

New volunteers boost operations, communications, facilities and fundraising sub-committees

Bronze swimmer commemorative medal donated by Malcolm Archer for sale

October2011 First AGM of Chewton Pool Inc. with guests from Murchison Pool presentingMemberships renewedPreparations for art auction underway

Lifeguard training underway

November2011 Funding deed concluded with Mount Alexander Shire CouncilFirst testing of new reticulation“The Big Pour” concourse rebuild

Monster More than Art Auction fundraiser

Invitations to pool re-opening sent out

Kiosk volunteers train in CPR

Grounds and pools prepared by volunteers on daily shifts

Pool operator training begins

December2011 OPENING DAY 3 DECEMBERAfter school care students using pool

31 December record swimmer numbers (225)

Lions and Rotary Clubs of Castlemaine partner to fund a new shade area

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