Cemetery Creek walking tracks receive upgrades

Aileen Banfield walks along a newly constructed section of the Cemetry Creek walking track, which was funded through a grant from Pacific Hydro.

Aileen Banfield walks along a newly constructed section of the Cemetry Creek walking track, which was funded through a grant from Pacific Hydro.

ARARAT - Those who wander along the walking tracks beside Cemetery Creek will have noticed various works that have been carried out in recent months.

The newest work completed is the re-gravelling of the track surface between Banfield Street and the Western Highway (Stawell exit), which was funded by two grants from Pacific Hydro.

Over the past two years other parts of the walking/cycling track following beside the Cemetery Creek have either been resurfaced or constructed by the Ararat Rural City Council.

These areas are near to Queen Street, and from the Cemetery beside the Pyrenees Highway to Burn Street, and along Burn Street to Flint Hill.

This walking/cycling track passes through the northern residential section of Ararat.

The track is popular for its pleasant natural environment for passive recreation, while further extensions will link up with the very well constructed footpath beside the Western Highway, from the railway crossing east of Ararat to Green Hill Lake.

Major erosion works on Cemetery Creek have been attended to over the past 12 months at Golf Links Road and Thompson Street, as well as in 2012 at Ash Grove.

These works have been funded through the 2011 Government Flood Recovery Funds by the Department of Sustainability and Environment, the Glenelg Hopkins Catchment Management Authority and the Ararat City Rural Council.

Through funding grants received by both the Ararat Regional Bio-Links Network and the Ararat Landcare Group over the past 10 to 12 years, both groups have been annually attending to bringing the exotic weed growth on these lands under control.

In many areas within the public open space of the Crown Lands beside Cemetery Creek, the exotic weed growth, especially gorse and flax leaf broom, were dense and head high making it difficult to walk through some of the areas.

Today the walkers and cyclists have a clear view of the meandering creek bed, as well as a clear view through the open treed areas.

Within these 10 to 12 years some $40,000 has been received in funding by the two groups to cover the costs of materials for this weed eradication work.

All labour, which has been provided free of costs and voluntarily, is estimated to be somewhere in the vicinity of $60,000 to $100,000.

Neighbouring residents to the Cemetery Creek, who carry out many tasks and maintenance, have been acknowledged in assisting to passionately care for the amazing amenity that has been created within the city.

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