2 June 2023

Lions club buoyed as Nimmitabel lake pathway project nears completion

| Gail Eastaway
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two women looking at ducks

The Lake Williams pathway project in Nimmitabel is nearing completion after a series of frustrating setbacks. Photo: Gail Eastaway.

After many frustrating setbacks, the Nimmitabel Lions Club has finally been able to extend the pathway around Lake Williams, a project that has been on the planning board for many years.

People may not realise that Lake Williams itself was the brainchild of the Nimmitabel Lions Club, with the donation of the land by the Williams family to the town of Nimmitabel.

Fences were removed and excavation work was done by the Public Works Department before trees were planted in a community effort that started 30 years ago.

Initially, the path led around to a little jetty, a popular spot for feeding the birds or for the braver souls to launch themselves into the water. The jetty was removed years ago by the council when the structure was deemed unstable and unsafe, leaving the path at a bit of a dead end.

Extending it to a complete circuit of the lake with an all-weather track, suitable for a break for travellers as well as a walk for locals and a bike track for kids, has been the vision for the town. The project was taken on by the local Lions club.

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Funding came from the Boco Rock Community Enhancement Fund in the 2020 round of grants, with $59,500 contributed to make the path a reality. Before work could start, though, there were thought to be Aboriginal relics on the site, meaning that a thorough assessment was needed by Conservation and Heritage Planning and Management, which took time and funds from the project.

Wet weather also held up the project and costs had significantly increased, so the path now makes it about three-quarters of the way around the lake. The Lions club is hoping for funding to complete the project, which so far has involved 350 hours of volunteer labour from the Lions club and Friends of Lions.

One final step will be the installation of a plaque to recognise the contribution of the Boco Rock wind farm to the path.

The next round of annual Boco Rock Community Funding is about to start, and local groups are being strongly encouraged to apply.

In the years since the wind farm was constructed, many community groups have benefitted from this fund, with projects such as upgrades to the CWA rooms, community centre, creation of the Nimmitabel Team Sorting event, grandstands, bar repairs for the Nimmitabel Showground, a laneway for cattle yards and refurbishment at Nimmitabel Country Club.

Applications for the Boco Rock Community Enhancement Fund will be open from 5 June to 10 July.

The Boco Rock Community Enhancement Fund Committee was established as a result of the development approval through the NSW Government Department of Planning. Expenditure by the committee is restricted to the former Bombala and former Cooma-Monaro Local Government Areas (LGAs) as a condition of the development approval.

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This funding program offers an exciting opportunity for community groups and organisations in these former LGAs to obtain funding for projects or events that will demonstrate community enhancement measures such as improvements to infrastructure and services, sustainability initiatives and opportunities for local economic and tourist development.

Any questions regarding the Boco Rock Community Enhancement Fund should be referred to the governance team on 1300 345 345 or email [email protected].

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