ARARAT’S Save Our Pool committee is cautiously optimistic the city’s outdoor Olympic swimming pool might be granted a reprieve from demolition.
Save Our Pool committee member Ambrose Cashin said Ararat Rural City Council agreed to revisit its decision to permanently close the pool and demolish the structure at an assembly on Tuesday night.
He said Mayor Ian Wilson made the announcement at Saturday morning’s community rally at the Ararat War Memorial.
“It’s a closed assembly, but they’ve agreed to look at the decision as a result of the rally,” he said.
“What happens out of that, who knows?”
Mr Cashin estimated about 2000 people attended the rally.
“That’s more than we had at the first community meeting two years ago,” he said.
“We were thrilled to have that many people there, especially because it was a bit cold and windy and it was AFL grand final day.
“The community has shown very clearly it wants the pool to be retained and redeveloped.”
Mr Cashin and Crs Wilson, Gwenda Allgood, Gary Hull and Ian Harris addressed the crowd.
“A lot of people had questions for the Mayor,” Mr Cashin said.
“There were some he didn’t want to answer, but to his credit he did.”
Mr Cashin said the crowd was well behaved.
“There were people there who were passionate about saving the pool and the ‘save our pool’ chant was repeated a few times,” he said.
“People showed respect for the councillors when they spoke, but they made it clear that they want the pool.
“We asked people if their rates were to go up an extra $50 a term, would people still be for it? A show of hands said they would be.”
Mr Cashin said a number of people had come up with ideas about how to reduce the cost of redeveloping the pool.
“The community has spoken,” he said.
“Now it’s up to council to decide whether or not it is going to listen to the community.”
Cr Wilson confirmed he would raise the matter at an assembly of council on Tuesday night.