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A CALL to open Northcote Golf Course to activities such as cycling and dog-walking has upset club members.

POSTED ON May 1, 2013 @ 10:00 am

More than 40 residents attended a meeting with Rucker Ward Councillors Trent McCarthy and Oliver Walsh as well as Darebin Council officers late last month to discuss opening up the course for low-impact use and building a footbridge across Merri Creek to East Brunswick. Northcote resident Tania Struzina said the course was council land belonging to all ratepayers. “There are possibilities for paths on the perimeter of the golf course and along the creek,” she said. “These areas could be caged to stop people getting hit by balls .” Fellow Northcote resident Mischa Barr said a footbridge over Merri Creek at the edge of the course would give residents safe access to popular destinations such as the CERES Community Environment Park. But club secretary Phil Goad said opening up access could kill the club. “If people come in to ride bikes and walk their dogs, golfers will stop playing there because they won’t want to be liable, so we might as well close the whole place down,” he said. He said a footbridge over the creek was possible if it was built somewhere off the end of Beavers Rd. Darebin City design and environment director Daniel Freer said a report on increased public access and the proposed bridge would be presented to Darebin Council this month.

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