Fraser Coast councillor Stuart Taylor (second from left) listens to the concerns of Barry Hyne, Allan Paterson, Dot Douglas from the Scarness Action Group, Jean Hyne and Betty Davidson about the East Street Kindergarten's plans to seal part of Barron Park for a car park.
Fraser Coast councillor Stuart Taylor (second from left) listens to the concerns of Barry Hyne, Allan Paterson, Dot Douglas from the Scarness Action Group, Jean Hyne and Betty Davidson about the East Street Kindergarten's plans to seal part of Barron Park for a car park. Alistair Brightman

Scarness residents and kindy at loggerheads about park

SCARNESS residents are furious about a local kindergarten's plan to seal a section of Barron Park to create a car park.

But a representative from East Street Kindergarten said their focus was on safety and the work, which would be done within the existing grounds of the kindergarten, would not have any impact on Barron Park.

The representative said it had received a $200,000 Community Enhancement and Refurbishment Grant and intended to enlarge its storeroom, provide a meeting room, renovate the children's bathroom and kitchen area and provide a safer, double gate-accessed entranceway.

Tingira Terrace residents Allan and Alda Paterson, along with other residents, argue that the kindergarten took a "big chunk" of the park in a boundary realignment without public consultation.

A recent application in which a portion of the park might become a bitumen carpark has further angered residents.

Bree Jashin, whose mother Betty lives near the park, said former Hervey Bay mayor Jack Barron had donated the land to the community to enjoy.

In a submission to the council, she objected to both the building of a formal bitumen carpark and the existing, informal gravel carpark, arguing that area should be reincorporated into the park.

"It's going too far," she said.

Fraser Coast councillor Stuart Taylor said the land which the community believed belonged to them had actually been given to the kindergarten by Mr Barron.

The kindergarten had consulted with the council as they couldn't afford to pay rates on the extended block of land, so it had been subdivided and Barron Park had been created on one part of it.

Cr Taylor said the kindergarten's application, if approved, would not have an impact on the park and playground and actually had the intention of making the area safer.

"The kindy is not looking at removing the playground," Cr Taylor said.

The residents have invited fellow supporters to join them for a sausage sizzle at the park at noon on Sunday.



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