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Friday, 11 Mar 2016

Pioneer Park trial closes as Ballarat City talks with CMCA about members only Recreational Vehicle facility

GSA  talks to CMCA supervisor Grant Tillett at Pioneer Park Ballarat  .
GSA talks to CMCA supervisor
Grant Tillett at Pioneer
Park Ballarat .

Ballarat City Council has ended its Pioneer Park Freedom Camping trial.

Access to the Pioneer Park site will close on March 31 the draft Council minutes report.

Talks are under way with the Campervan and Motorhome Club of Australia (CMCA) aimed at the establishment of a CMCA Members Only Recreational Vehicle Park.

From the City of Ballarat minutes of Feb. 24 Executive summary:

At the Council meeting held on 13 August 2014 Council resolved (R262/14) to undertake a 12 month trial of freedom camping at Pioneer Park. The rationale for the trial was based on extended discussions with representatives of the Campervan and Motorhome Club Ltd (CMCA) and Caravan Park owners. In arguing for freedom camping opportunities, it was put to Council that there is a perceived lack of suitable product for Recreational Vehicle owners who prefer not to stay in caravan parks as these parks do not meet their needs.

The rules Pioneer Park Ballarat
The rules Pioneer Park Ballarat

The trial was an attempt to balance these requirements with the arguments by the caravan park owners that considered free camping would have a detrimental impact of their commercial viability and potential create a range of difficult compliance problems. In doing so it agreed to undertake the trial according to a number of conditions.

Concerns regarding the impact of the trial on caravan parks in the City were raised in March 2015, with the matter brought before Council in June 2015 to consider whether the trial should continue.

In June 2015 Council deferred consideration of this matter in order to hear in detail and consult more fully with each of the parties being the CMCA and caravan park operators. At Council's Assembly meeting of Wednesday 2 September 2015, Council met with and heard from each of these parties. Subsequently Council requested the matter be brought back into the Council chamber for consideration and at this meeting of 9 September 2015, agreed to:

Undertake further discussions with the Supervisory Team and Campervan and Motorhome Club Ltd on alternative models and locations for operating freedom camping opportunities in Ballarat before determining the future of the trial and continue the trial for a further three month period (R320/2015).

Typical freedom campers rig at Pioneer Park Ballarat
Typical freedom campers rig at Pioneer Park Ballarat

The period of the trial has now exceeded the agreed period, and discussions with the CMCA have commenced regarding the establishment of a CMCA Members only RV Park.

On this basis, it seems appropriate the CMCA members will be serviced by this new facility and hence, the trial facility at Pioneer Park cease with access to the site closed on 31 March 2016 to allow sufficient time to notify travellers that the freedom camping option will no longer be available to them.

Public Representation:

Mr Garry Fitzgerald made a public representation.

Mr Steven Fisher made a public representation.

Mr Grant Tillet made a public representation.

Ms Adrienne Cove made a public representation.

Editor's Note: For  more  background please see -

Pioneer Park freedom camping trial poses key stakeholder issues for Ballarat Council

Position on free, freedom compliant camping www.GoSeeAustralia.com.au and www.GoSeeNewZealand.co.nz are free touring websites set up by the Canberra based website building company ContACT Internet Solutions. Both websites are designed to provide an easy to use free national source of information for travellers and the caravanning industry to assist drive tourism in Australia and New Zealand. Our company policy is to recommend caravan parks for the security of travellers. Our staff members include long-term caravan park owners. GoSee free camps when and where appropriate. GoSee will not free camp to the detriment of a caravan park. When travelling GoSee pays its way. Usually this is at the commercial rack rate.

For more information
contact: Garth Morrison
Editor Go See Australia and Go See New Zealand Directory
Email: garth@contact.com.au

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