Lifesavers fight to stay afloat


Scarboro Surf Life Saving Club president Alan Carville.
Picture: Andrew Ritchie        www.communitypix.com.au   d451362
Scarboro Surf Life Saving Club president Alan Carville. Picture: Andrew Ritchie        www.communitypix.com.au d451362

In the path of two major developments, the $57 million Metropolitan Redevelopment Authority (MRA) Scarborough Redevelopment and the City of Stirling’s $26 million Scarborough Beach Pool, the club will be relocated to temporary premises while the area is a construction site.

Scarboro SLSC president Alan Carville said the building was especially significant for some of the club’s older members.

“We’ve still got members in the club who were involved back when it was built in 1964, so they have a lot invested in this building,” he said. “They even built parts of the building; there is a lot of affection for this place.”

Mr Carville said the club would lose the gym and social hall during the construction period to temporary premises of “essentially 10 converted shipping containers,” he said.

“The gym is a big drawcard for members. We’ve been trying to find a way to replace that, but it doesn’t look like we’re going to be able to, so the members will have to go and find their own gym.

“The Scarborough Beach Pool project is a challenge for us, as it removes a whole lot of parking and it will cause access issues for us because we will be squeezed in by the pool.

“We are looking at how we will be able to provide social events and generate income without the hall.

“At the end it will be good, but we’re certainly going to go through a couple of years of pain.”

Mr Carville said the club had not signed away their 21-year lease because they wanted confirmation of a timeline.

“We have to sign off the fact that we are prepared to vacate our lease, so ultimately the clubrooms won’t be knocked down until we sign that,” he said.

“We’ve had some issues around communication (with the MRA) but we have had regular meetings.

“We had three things that we needed to have before we were prepared to vacate the lease: the funding secured, plans for the new clubrooms and a confirmed schedule of works.”

Stirling signed off on a funding agreement with the MRA earlier this month.

MRA chief executive Kieran Kinsella said the works and demolition of the clubrooms were planned to start next month and the Scarboro SLSC would be relocated to a temporary base at the northern end of the Esplanade Reserve.

Mr Carville said the club was taking a “fairly positive” approach but the move to a temporary base would be difficult for some members.

“Our greatest fear was that we’d end up in a pop-up thing for the next 10 years,” he said.

“We’d want to be able to tell our members how long we will be sitting in a container compound for because that will be a challenge for us.

“I think everyone has been waiting for a Scarborough redevelopment for some time and we really want to be a part of it.

“The public will be expecting that Scarboro SLSC will have quite a presence with the new beachfront re-development.”

Mr Kinsella said the new Beach Hub complex would be located adjacent to the City’s proposed pool and facilities, and was being designed to accommodate the Scarboro SLSC and Stirling’s beach services.