AFTER three long years of planning, organising, filling out paper work, seeking approvals and construction, the tap was finally turned on the Campaspe River pipeline to Rochester and Elmore District Health Service.
Having been motivated by the residents of the REDHS aged care facilities to keep the gardens looking fresh and healthy, the board and staff of REDHS began working on how they could upgrade their water supply.
Preceeding Thursday night’s annual general meeting, chief executive Anne McEvoy explained how the pipeline came to be and was thrilled with the end result.
‘‘This project typified the importance of collaboration and partnerships and in particular the importance of community when it comes to getting things done,’’ she said in her speech.
‘‘The idea commenced in 2015 in response to feedback about the state of the grounds and residents’ displeasure of having lack of access to water.
‘‘Approval for access to the five properties was sought and granted by neighbouring landowners — Cate and Mark Ward, David and Sharon Williams, Justin and Rachel Cleary, Rochester Catholic Church and Restdown Retirement Village and John and Vivienne Moon — which was vital and in my opinion exemplified the spirit of the Rochester community and their strong value system to their local health service.
‘‘We were also required to obtain section 173 agreement with the Shire of Campaspe to allow the pipe to be bored underneath Morton St.
‘‘The pump system at REDHS’s front lawn is designed to utilise the underground tank water first, which is all of REDHS’s rainwater including from roadways, then the electric solenoids will automatically divert the suction line to the above ground tank — the river water — and vice versa.
‘‘The smiles on our residents, staff and community shows why this project was so important and highlights the benefits of having a ‘green parkland’ environment to our health and wellbeing.’’
The taps were officially turned on by REDHS residents Ivy Douglas and Ray Bowman with pivotal members of the project, including former director of the REDHS board for 10 years Keith Oberin and maintenance superviser Brett Shotton, watching on.