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Here is your online copy of the March Talking Heads for you to read and share.We expect that you will enjoy reading this bumper online issue and appreciate you sharing it with your networks 🙂March Talking HeadsThis issue of Talking Heads will be ONLINE only.

COME TO OUR FIRST MEETING FOR 2023 ON THE 20TH MARCH 7:00PM AT THE SENIORS Our guest speaker is local environmentalist and President of the Friends of the Bluff John Duthie. The imposing headland is a profound Wadawurrung place, of geological significance, a special site for coastal and marine science and education, home to amazing plants, birds and animals and is a calming, meditative space with great views. Friends of the Bluff, a community volunteer group, formed in 1995 to assist in the recovery and re-vegetation of the Bluff. The group has conducted working bees, litter collections, monitored flora and fauna, conducted education and interpretation events, participated in citizen science projects and developed cutting edge marine and coastal education resources. FoB has been honoured to be the recipient of a number of prestigious environment awards. Jon was a founding member of Friends of the Bluff and has helped plan and coordinate countless events, projects and activities. He enjoys talking about the Bluff very much.


Tickets available online through Eventbrite, and at our meeting on the 20th March.


Active Travel Map for the Bellarine Bellarine Bicycle User Group (BBUG) is working on a project to design and publish an Active Travel Map for the Bellarine.  (for cyclists, pedestrians, visitors and locals)

There is a public drop in session on Tuesday 14th March at Springdale Neighbourhood Centre in Drysdale. 9:00 – 10am cycling focus 10am – noon all welcome.

The Kitjarra-dja-bull Bullarto langi-ut masterplan

 A draft masterplan has been developed for the lower Barwon River corridor extending from the Western Growth area of Geelong to the estuary at Barwon Heads and the Moorabool River corridor extending from near Meredith to Geelong. The objective of the masterplan is to connect the community to the river while protecting and enhancing the environmental and cultural values of the corridor. The draft masterplan has been developed based on the results of a community survey undertaken in September 2022 and input from the Wadawurrung Traditional Owners, a number of State Government agencies, the City of Greater Geelong and the Golden Plains Shire.   The masterplan identifies a number of projects which will enhance the community access and amenity of this important river corridor. The draft masterplan is currently being reviewed by the project partners before being released for public comment in late March with a final masterplan expected to be released in July. The draft masterplan will be released for public comment by the end of March through the Engage Victoria website masterplan is funded by the Department of Energy, Environment and Climate Action (DEECA) as an initiative of the Rivers of the Barwon (Barre Warre Yulluk) Action Plan.   More information on the project can be found at:

PLANNING – some updates

Wake Boarding Cable Park, Accommodation and RestaurantPlanning Permit Application PP1348-2020   Site 1392-1450 Barwon Heads Rd Connewarre This had been in the system since 2020. The site is opposite the Barwon Heads Airport. We, and many others, have objected (and if you are concerned you can still object until a decision is made). We are concerned that neither the reports by the applicant’s consultant (including the Stormwater Management Plan) nor the submission by the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) refer to the potential effects and risks to the abutting Ramsar listed wetlands from groundwater leaking from the 2 apparently unlined lakes to be constructed on the land and permeating the subsoils and entering the abutting Ramsar wetlands. The effect of such potential volume of fresh water entering the wetlands should be better understood and considered before granting a permit.DELWP has “some concern that the development and implementation of the stormwater management plan is still to be determined” and ”there is uncertainty as to how this will be managed” and the existing plan ”seems inconsistent with the Department of Health Water Unit advice.” Threats to a Ramsar wetland and the biodiversity impacts may be regulated by the Commonwealth Department of Climate Change, Energy, the Environment and Water under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999. The BHA believes that this proposed development may result in significant impacts on the habitat of nationally listed species and communities and listed migratory species on the abutting Ramsar wetlands through the possible effects of altered hydrology and through noise and visual disturbance. DAL process – we are waiting for an update and are supporting the Combined Bellarine Communities Association in requesting a meeting with the Minister for Planning to express concern about the delay in implementing the new planning policy. 65-105 Lings Road Connewarre – The Applicant has lodged an application with VCAT to review the Council’s decision to refuse a permit for a Restaurant, Function Centre and Outdoor Recreation Facility located immediately adjacent to the Ramsar listed Murtnaghurt Lagoon. VCAT has listed the matter for hearing on 23- 26 October 2023 66-68 Hitchcock Avenue Barwon Heads  –  We understand the Council apparently intends to approve a 4th application to amend the planning permit to effectively grant retrospective approval for external alterations to the building which do not appear to be in accordance with the planning permit. Our objection to the process and request for information remains unanswered. In the meantime we welcome the new businesses that are opening there – our concerns have nothing to do with them.