Making Buninyong is a City of Ballarat Community Place Making Initiative
What's happening around Buninyong
Avenue of Honour Restoration - Community March
A large crowd turned out to watch and participate in the Community March along Buninyong's restored Avenue of Honour in Learmonth Street on 1 July 2017.
A commemorative ceremony, with a flyover by the RAAF, then took place outside the Town Hall and the Avenue was rededicated to honour the 167 men of the former Buninyong Shire who died in World War I.
The Avenue of Honour was originally planted exactly 100 years ago, on 30 June 1917, however it had become neglected over the years and many of the name plaques had disappeared. The Centenary Restoration Project involved researching the names of the local soldiers who had died in the war, clearing intrusive shrubbery and replanting dead trees, placing new plaques on concrete plinths next to each tree, and organising the commemorative march and ceremony.
An informative booklet was distributed to all present documenting the district's involvement in World War I and the 3-year project to restore the 1917 Avenue of Honour.
Left/above: An Australian Army Band followed by members of 8th/7th Battalion, Royal Victoria Regiment lead more than 30 local district community groups in the march along the Avenue of Honour; participants outside the Buninyong Town Hall before the commemorative ceremony; four RAAF planes flying in tight formation along the Avenue of Honour towards Mount Buninyong
Imagine Buninyong, 13 - 14 June
To start the local planning process for the new Buninyong Township Plan by the City of Ballarat, the Buninyong and District Community Association (BDCA) engaged Australian community planner/builder Peter Kenyon from the 'Bank of Ideas' to give two free talks in June to help stimulate our ideas about what we want for our community in the future. Peter has worked with more than 2000 communities throughout Australia and overseas to facilitate fresh and creative ways to stimulate a local process of ideas-making.
The first Imagine Buninyong session was held in the Buninyong Town Hall on Tuesday 13th June at 7pm with supper. A breakfast session was held on Wednesday 14th June at 7:30am for local businesses. All Buninyong residents were invited to attend.
25th Buninyong Film Festival
Buninyong Town Hall, 26-27 May
Buninyong's annual Film Festival celebrated its 25th anniversary this year. As well as an expanded lineup of fine films from around the world, audiences were treated to lots of special giveaways and a slice of the spectacular birthday cake.
A highlight of the festival for many was the opening night screening of "Tanna" and the Q&A session with one of the directors, Bentley Dean. The Academy Award winning film "The Salesman" from Iran, gripped the audience with its intensity and, among others, the Saturday afternoon gold-coin entry film, "Girl Asleep" was admired for its imaginative style.
Joan Goldsmith, who started the festival and successfully reigned over it for 25 years as its President, was cheered loudly as she was crowned its Queen in the closing ceremony and thanked for her long-standing contribution to Buninyong's cultural life.
Well done, Joan! And long live the Buninyong Film Festival!
The Tempest in the Buninyong Botanic Gardens
Eight wonderful performances of Shakespeare's much-loved comedy brought magic to the Buninyong Botanic Gardens over two weekends: Friday 10 to Sunday 19 Feb. Directed by Susan Pilbeam, the play was a delight from start to end, as it moved through the Gardens, from the Rotunda to the lily pond to the walled garden. Experienced actors played the lead roles, including several performing arts graduates from Federation University, sweetly supported by a flock of musical sprites from Buninyong Primary School.
All credit to the organisers, cast and crew. We look forward to another appearance next year, as promised. Contact The Bard in Buninyong and read more about them on their Bard in Buninyong Facebook page
Marmalade makers from around Australia and local marmalade lovers were out in force at the Buninyong Marvellous Marmalade Fair this month. Prizes were awarded in many categories and Australia's top marmalades competed for selection in the team to tour to the International Marmalade Awards in Cumbria. Many delectable marmalades were for sale, too. See the MarmalAshes website for more info. Full results coming soon.
Travels with My Black Dog - Botanic Gardens, Sunday 22 January
An appreciative audience relaxed in the shade of the Buninyong Botanic Gardens while watching Tripwire Theatre's Travels with My Black Dog on Sunday 22 January. Katrina Hill had the audience playing ball with her in her role as the lively, affectionate dog - a very enjoyable performance!
Travels with My Black Dog is a free family comedy with a heart of gold which uses humour to shine light on the realities of living with depression.
Tripwire Theatre Inc.’s latest touring production is a two-person performance, written by Bjorn Worpel and Megan Riedl. It is comedic work, despite dealing with a serious topic: depression. Travels with My Black Dog will be performed in Buninyong at the Botanic Gardens on Sunday the 22nd of January at 6.30pm.
Road closures, traffic diversions and parking restrictions are in place throughout Buninyong during the races for the safety of the cyclists, spectators and road users.
Sun 4-6 Dec: Scotsburn Art Exhibition, Village Place, 309 Learmonth St
One year after the horrific fires around Scotsburn, a poignant exhibition of photos and art works by local residents documenting their experience is on display in the foyer of Village Place, next to the Town Hall.
Buninyong Football/Netball Club Popup Shop
Don't miss the cute popup shop in the newly-restored space between Espresso Depot and Yellow Rose in Learmonth Street. It's open 10am-4pm until Sunday 4 December and has a gorgeous range of quality giftware - ideal for your Christmas shopping.
Staffed by volunteers, it's a fund-raiser for the Buninyong Football/Netball Club.
After the Rain
September: Wonderful to see our lovely Gong full again and Lal Lal Falls in full flow. The frogs in the Gong are very happy - you can't miss their rousing chorus of croaks as you pass by. Many people have also gone out to Lal Lal to watch the Lal Lal Creek, now swollen into a torrent, thundering down the falls before winding its way through the gorge into the north-west arm of Lal Lal Reservoir/Bungal Dam. Spectacular!
Congratulations to the following Councillors who were elected to represent the South Ward in October:
The Buninyong and District Community Association ran a forum in the Buninyong Town Hall on 6 October for the community to meet and to hear from the candidates standing for election in the City of Ballarat’s South Ward. An outline of each candidate's position and vision was also given in the October 2016 Buninyong Newsletter
150 years old and still going strong
Historian Anne Beggs-Sunter unveiled a plaque commemorating the 150th anniversary of one of Buninyong's longest surviving houses on Friday 30th September. Built in 1866 by Robert Ogilvie on 10 acres on the flanks of Mt Buninyong, the cottage is remarkably intact today.
Joan Ogilvie spoke to a crowd of interested observers and members of the extended Ogilvie family about Robert and Jean Ogilvie's early arrival in Buninyong, their marriage by Rev. Hastie in 1855, and their family history. She also thanked the present owners, Mr & Mrs Michael McKee, for helping to preserve the well-built cottage so that it stands as a tangible reminder of Buninyong's early days.
Good news! The Buninyong Village Market is back
Lisa Cressey, Vice-president of BGLF, said the market will run from 9am to 1pm on the last Sunday of each month, from September to May. In December a special twilight market will be held on Saturday 10 December to coincide with the Buninyong Christmas Carols in Desoza Park. Many people were disappointed when market was canceled in March and its future seemed uncertain. Now it has been restored for all but the winter months. See Buninyong Village Market
Tuesday 30th August: The 2016 Australian and New Zealand Internet Awards (ANZIA) were a big night for Buninyong as the Buninyong Community Website (yes, this site!) won the Leonie Dunbar Memorial Award for Community Websites at a Gala Dinner held in the Plaza Ballroom in Melbourne. Many internet luminaries were at the dinner and awards were presented in six categories.
In her acceptance speech, Liz Lumsdon, the website's designer and co-ordinator, thanked the many people in Buninyong who contribute to the website and help to make it truly representative of our community. With hundreds of community websites in Australia and many more in NZ, ours was a big achievement and one we can all be proud of. Victorians will also be chuffed that Harcourt Valley Community Website was Highly Recommended on the night.
The handsome crystal trophy is now on permanent display in the Buninyong Information Centre.
How many venues are available for hire in Buninyong?
Five? Ten? You might be surprised!
See the full list recently compiled by Roger Permezel as a project of the Buninyong and District Community Association in Buninyong Venues. You can also download a pdf with contact information and details of all amenities that each venue has to offer. See Buninyong Venues
Wednesday 13 July: Buninyong woke up under a light blanket of snow giving kids of all ages lots of fun throwing snow balls and building snow-gnomes. The snow melted away fast in the sun but lasted longer on the Mount where some real snowmen briefly appeared.
New Street sculptures for Buninyong
Friday 8th July: The Mayor of Ballarat, Cr Des Hudson, Cr Peter Innes, sculptor Cliff Burtt, and Michael Ford of the Arts Buninyong Group, all commended the handsome sculptures when speaking to the small crowd braving the wintry wind at the official unveiling in Buninyong's main intersection. Michael Ford said he was overjoyed to see a public display of creativity in the town and the speakers also praised the behind-the-scenes efforts of Julie Collins, Public Art Coordinator of the City of Ballarat, who helped to bring the project into fruition.
The group of sculptures reach 1.6 metres high and stretch eight metres across and are designed to encourage interaction from pedestrians. According to Cliff Burtt, “The profile of the sculpture is based on topographical mapping of the area ... the gaps between the elements of the work can be viewed as representations of the shafts sunk into the earth by gold miners”.
The much-admired project was funded from the Council's Engaging Communities Program and Public Art capital budget.
June 2016: Council workers then sculptor Cliff Burtt himself have been busy on the north east corner of Buninyong's main intersection installing the long-awaited street sculptures. Cliff explained that he was applying a weak acid wash to increase the patination of the welded steel cor-ten sculptures, giving them a rust-like weathered appearance.
The sculptures are an exciting addition to Buninyong's town centre that are sure to provoke a lot of interest.
Revised Buninyong Visitor Guide launched - 8 July
With funding assistance from Ballarat Regional Tourism (BRT), the Buninyong & District Community Association (BDCA) has produced the third edition of the Buninyong Visitor Guide. The fully-revised booklet sports a fresh new look inspired, in part, by the new 110 page Ballarat & Surrounds Visitor Guide produced just a few months ago. The new edition was launched by BRT’s recently-appointed CEO Noel Dempsey, on 8 July at the Red Door Pizzeria Restaurant in Buninyong.
24 June: It's snowing!
Mayor formally wraps up the Stars Project in Buninyong
June: The One Million Stars To End Violence Project has officially concluded in Buninyong after brightening our streets for the last three months, but many shops and organisations have chosen to keep their displays on show until the stars get packed up to go to Brisbane.
Rosie Batty, Anti-Violence campaigner and 2015 Australian of the Year, visited Buninyong in the previous week to see the project on display in Buninyong's streets.
24 June: The Mayor of Ballarat, Cr. Des Hudson, officially drew a close to the 1 Million Stars To End Violence Project in Buninyong today.
At a small ceremony celebrating the success of the project, the organiser, Lidia Aitken, explained that the project had been intended to run for only three months in Buninyong, however some local organisations have chosen to keep their stars on display here until they all get packed up to go into a million-star installation that is being prepared for the 2018 Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast.
A team of 20 star-weavers in Ballarat and Buninyong, with a core group of eight, have been creating the stars for several months: each star takes 5 minutes to weave. The weavers have a target of 10,000 stars for delivery to Brisbane by the end of this year.
Over 5,000 stars spread across more than 50 locations in Buninyong have put on a remarkable, and beautiful, show of community solidarity with the project's aim of countering the levels of domestic violence in our society.
Rosie Batty comes to town
14 June 2016: Domestic violence campaigner and 2015 Australian of the Year, Rosie Batty, visited Buninyong to meet the local star-weavers behind the 1 Million Stars To End Violence Project and to see Buninyong's amazing community effort in publicly supporting the Anti-Violence campaign.
Impressed by the level of support for the campaign, Rosie stopped and chatted to several shop-owners and representatives who came out to meet her on her walk around town. During a coffee break at The Old Bluestone Café, the star-weavers treated her to an impromptu lesson on how to create the stars.
Rosie then went to Ballarat to launch the anti-violence campaign by Berry Street Family Services: Ballarat is no place for violence which focuses on the effects of family violence on children.
Buninyong backs 1 Million Stars To End Violence project
April-June 2016: Most of Buninyong's shops and offices contributed their windows, making a brilliant display.
Groups of dedicated star-makers worked diligently for months, weaving thousands of stars to support the One Million Stars To End Violence project. In a remarkable effort of community solidarity, nearly all of Buninyong's shops and organisations have got behind the project, displaying the stars in their windows along Learmonth and Warrenheip Streets, with some in side streets too. Have you seen their gorgeous displays, pictured above?
It's not just for decoration!
It's a wonderful sight but there's a serious purpose underlying it. All of the participating organisations also display an accompanying explanation about the anti-violence project. It's worth reading!
Thank you to all star-makers, all local project organisers and all Buninyong's participating shops and organisations:
Buninyong Bakery, Buninyong Community Bank, Buninyong Fish Shop, Buninyong Foodworks supermarket, Buninyong Hair & Beauty, Buninyong Golf Club, Buninyong Information Centre, Buninyong Men's Shed, Buninyong Newsagency, Buninyong Pizza & Hamburger House, Buninyong Post Office, Buninyong Pre-school, Buninyong Police Station, Buninyong Primary School, Buninyong Town Hall, Celebrate!, Chocalatto, Divine Vintage, Espresso Depot, Fig Leaf Café, Pig & Goose Restaurant, Harcourt RE, Hill View Lodge, Lions Book Store, PRD Nationwide RE, Red Door Pizzeria, Remedial Massage, Sew Special, Shine Hair & Beauty, Steiner School, The Old Blue Stone Café, UFS dispensary & Doctor's surgery, Vagg's Garage, Village Place, Yellow Rose Beauty Salon ... and there are more to come!
Friday 27 - Saturday 28 May, 2016, Buninyong Town Hall
It was a great line-up of films, as ever, and the night sessions were booked out. Program details are on the Film Festival website: Buninyong Film Festival. See photos from this year's festival in the Buninyong Film Festival Photo Gallery. Next year will be the 25th Film Festival in Buninyong and it will be BIG!
Autumn in Buninyong
The Virginia creeper twining along the shop fronts looks brilliant, even the fallen leaves look beautiful.
Smart Building and Living Expo
Sunday 28 Feb, 10am - 4pm, Royal Park, Buninyong
Buninyong Marvellous Marmalade Fair
1pm, Saturday 30th January 2016, Buninyong Town Hall
A wonderful annual event where marmalade-makers from all over Australia vie for selection in the team of Aussie marmalades that will compete at the International Marmalade Awards in Cumbria. Winners were announced at the Fair in a wide range of mouth-watering categories (eg Seville, Cumquat, Three-fruits) as well as the touring team for this year's MarmalAshes. Jars of delectable marmalade from top marmalade chefs will also be on sale. Read more at: Buninyong Marvellous Marmalade Fair
Australian National Road Racing Championships, 7 and 9-10 January
6 January 2016 - Scotsburn Fire Community Recovery event
Buninyong Town Hall at 6pm. All welcome - no rsvp required. Community BBQ afterward. Dr. Rob Gordon, clinical psychologist and experienced disaster recovery expert, will give an understanding of how disasters affect people and communities, the recovery process and how to get extra support.
Recovery Centre:Buninyong Community House, 407 Warrenheip St, Buninyong.
Recovery Information Line - 1300 799 232
18 December 2015: Scotsburn - Elaine Bushfire
Thank you to all our wonderful fireys who battled the fires heroically at Scotsburn, Durham Lead, Clarendon, Mt Doran, Elaine and Mt Mercer in terrible weather conditions. Much sadness for those who have lost their houses, stock and fencing. Support has been pouring in and donations can be made at the Buninyong Community Bank in Warrenheip St. 31 December: The CFA advised that the Scotsburn fire is under control. The clearing of roads has allowed residents access to their properties. CFA fire-fighters continued to patrol the fire area.
ABC local radio, Sky News and other emergency broadcasters
Victorian Bushfire Information Line (1800 240 667)
For All Emergencies Dial: 000
Buninyong Urban Fire Brigade Enquiries: Marc Cannan (Captain) 0409 415 612 Fire Station: 5341 3661
Buninyong Town Precinct Upgrade - it's finished!
After several months working in all sorts of weather, Paul Nolan and his crew signed off on the Buninyong town centre upgrade on 15th December, in time for Christmas then Buninyong's next big event - the bike races in January. A job well done!
Buninyong Good Life Festival
This year's Buninyong Good Life Festival drew large crowds who enjoyed lots of activities and a wide range of stalls in Desoza Park on 25th October. Visit the Buninyong Good Life Festival website for more information
Sculptor Cliff Burtt positions models of his street sculptures in the newly-upgraded north-east corner of Buninyong's town centre. But debate is growing about where they would be best placed: there is clearly more room on the south-east corner, in front of the old bank, rather than in the smaller and more congested space on the north-east corner, as first proposed. What do you think?
Buninyong Town Precinct Upgrade
The north-east corner of the main intersection is almost finished: the barriers have gone, the new paving, low stone wall and tree enclosure are looking good. Now we're just waiting for the grass to grow and the street sculpture by Cliff Burtt to arrive (and hoping that the drainage will cope if we have a major deluge).
All the pedestrian disruption, noise and construction have suddenly shifted to the south side of Learmonth Street. What's happening behind those hoardings? Let's hope we don't end up with street plantings like those on the right! No way that could happen here, surely!
Buninyong Parks under the microscope
What do we want for Desoza Park and Royal Park? Both these important recreation areas are currently under redevelopment by the City of Ballarat and local input is essential if we want good results.
The City of Ballarat is undertaking a Facilities Plan to assess infrastructure requirements, landscape opportunities and priorities for Royal Park. Community members are invited to come along and have their say about the future development of Royal Park at an open house session to be held at Royal Park on Monday 7 September, 4 - 6 pm.
Both these parks are vital to Buninyong's present and future recreational needs. Make sure that Council hears what we want for these valuable community assets and ensure that they are developed properly.
Buni News in the SLV
Readers of the Buninyong Newsletter and local history lovers will be pleased to know that a full set of the first 387 printed editions of the Newsletter (July 1977-August 2012) have now been safely archived in the State Library of Victoria. Collectively they are a treasury of stories and images about Buninyong's growth over those 35 years and it's reassuring that they will be preserved for posterity. Thank you to former editors Betty Schreinzer and Ann Gooding for providing this complete set of early print editions for the Library's archives. The current editors also send print copies to the Library each month since February this year. Back copies of all digital editions since August 2012 are now available online on this website at: Newsletters 2012-2014 and Newsletters 2015.
New wave of diggings in Buninyong
Cones, diggers, mysterious graffiti on the footpaths and workmen everywhere ... what's going on? Yes, the NBN is rolling through Buninyong and Mt Helen. Many streets have already been dug up for the conduit that will house the fibre underground. Thankfully, the main intersection is being prepared before the Council start digging up the same area for their Buninyong Town Precinct Upgrade Project.
Rock on Buninyong!
Some sections were too rocky for the conduit installation crews to be able to dig under the roads at first and they had to call for larger drilling machines. "We looked it up and discovered we were working at the foot of an extinct volcano!" they groaned. "It was much easier going in sandy Shepparton where we were before." "Tell us about it," locals reply, pointing to their rock piles and retaining walls.
2nd August 2015
Lots of people dug lots of holes in Birdwood Park on Mt Innes to plant a copse of trees commemorating Derick Leather, former Shire of Buninyong councillor and tireless worker on numerous local projects including the restoration of the Old Buninyong Library; the development of De Soza Park; maintenance of the Buninyong Cemetery, Swimming Pool, Mt Buninyong Reserve, Botanic Gardens and street tree plantings; researcher and regular contributor to the Buni News. The working bee was organised by the Friends of Buninyong Botanic Gardens with funds from the Ballarat City Council.
Pictured: Peter Hiscock, Stuart Crumpler and Julie Richardson; Stuart’s tractor and other diggers; Melinda Tant and Mayanna Lakerink digging a hole big enough for a pine tree with Paul, Sienna and Luke Tant; Des Sunderland and Sam van der Linden, Buninyong CFA. Photos by Russell Luckock.
New shops are opening, a pedestrian crossing is being planned for increasingly busy Warrenheip Street near the Post Office, and the walled garden in the old swimming pool area of the Botanic Gardens is still fenced off!
July 2015: Website Upgrade
Welcome to the new version of the Buninyong Community Website. Most of the material from the original site is here, plus a whole lot more, with still more to come. The new site still needs fine tuning and will keep changing as Buninyong changes, but right now we'd like your feedback.
The website aims to be an up-to-date and reliable source of information about Buninyong and the surrounding district, for visitors and local residents alike. And for this we need the ongoing help of Buninyong locals and friends.