NEXT time there’s flooding along the Hopkins River estuary Norm Sheppard and his Warrnambool and District Angling Club mates won’t have to spend half the night retrieving boats.
Come Christmas they will have another floating jetty designed to rise and fall with the tide — a far cry from three years ago when they worked in the dark after midnight freeing boats tied to old wooden fixed jetties swamped by flooding.
The last of the wooden jetties hand-built by voluntary labour was removed this week and will be replaced by a modern floating design.
“It will be great,” said Mr Sheppard, the club’s mooring officer.
“The old jetties used to go under during flooding and we had to release boats moored to them.”
Construction work will start soon and is scheduled for completion by Christmas before the summer tourist influx.
The city council has contributed about $50,000 and the club $25,000 which includes $10,000 from a state fisheries body.
Fencing around the clubrooms will be removed to give public access to two jetties adjacent to the club’s 70-year-old shed, the footpath will be extended and the river bank made safer.
Club members are planning to build a newer and larger shed next year.
Further along the river a new Lyndoch boat jetty has been completed along with a fishing jetty, a fishing platform and disabled access constructed at Proudfoots and the Simpson Street jetty has been completed.
A fishing jetty and boating ramp at Mahoneys Road fishing jetty was completed and the Jubilee Park fishing and boating jetties were replaced in recent years.