On Friday 4 December 2015, Member for Bellarine and Minister for Environment, Climate Change and Water Lisa Neville officially opened the pedestrian bridge linking our two seasonal camping grounds in St Leonards. The new bridge design accounts for existing catchment and coastal hazards, and the materials used allow for relocation of the bridge should future coastal erosion occur.
Coastal trail users no longer have to walk along the roadside to cross the creek, improving public safety and providing a more natural coastal experience. Works were completed with joint funding provided by the Victorian Government’s Public Safety on Public Land grants program. In addition to the bridge, works have included the installation of a gravel shared pathway linking to the existing coastal trail, coastal fencing to protect vegetation, bollards to define the pathway and tables and seats for the enjoyment of users.
Ms Diane James AM, Chair of the Bellarine Bayside Committee, said that the improvements to the coastal trail will not only satisfy the local residents, it will also improve the visitor experience for the campers by connecting the two camping grounds and also connecting this camp ground to the St Leonards boat ramp precinct which Bellarine Bayside upgraded last year.
The coastal trail improvement works by Bellarine Bayside complement recent coastal protection works undertaken by the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning including beach renourishment, an anchoring timber groyne to capture sand drift from the beach renourishment and coastal protection works on either side of the timber groyne.