Keep Hosken Reserve (Coburg North) accessible for all

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Moreland Council is going to rip up the grass oval at Hosken Reserve, lay plastic turf and lock residents out of 80% of the grounds.

The last community consultation about the Oval took place in 2009. The council has kept key details of the plan under wraps and is now rushing through the changes during the caretaker period before the October election.

PLEASE SIGN this petition to demand Moreland Council place an immediate hold on all changes to Hosken Reserve Oval until full community consultations are carried out.

Together we can develop a plan that will meet diverse needs and allow ALL of us to enjoy Hosken Reserve.

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Many members of the diverse Coburg North community enjoy using the Hosken Reserve Oval for leisure, exercise, picnics and dog walking. It's a beloved accessible green space that brings our community together. Our kids have learned to ride their bikes, done their first cartwheel and flown their kites on the oval. In 2020, the Oval has become more important to our mental and physical health than ever before.

Now Moreland Council, with funding from the State Government, is going to install stadium lighting, have the grass oval ripped up and replaced by plastic turf and surrounded by fences and netting, measuring up to 6 meters in some areas, locking out residents and giving near-exclusive use of the space to private sports clubs.

About 40% of Hosken Reserve is already fenced off and locked for sports use - once this project is complete residents will be locked out of about 80% of Hosken Reserve.

The last time the community was consulted about changes to Hosken Reserve was in 2009. The only stakeholders consulted in the recent phases of the project were sports groups.

While MP for Pascoe Vale Lizzie Blandthorn announced the awarding of the grant for this project on her social media on 28 August, Moreland Council waited until 18 September to announce the destruction of the Hosken Reserve Oval, just four days before entering the caretaker period before the 24 October election. The tender for the works opened on 19 September and closes 13 October, before the end of the caretaker period. 

This means it's almost too late for the community to have a say. Please sign this petition to demand Moreland Council place an immediate hold on all changes to Hosken Reserve Oval until full community consultations are carried out.

Projects to improve sporting facilities at Hosken Reserve have been discussed by various levels of government for a decade, but Moreland Council has pulled a bait and switch on ratepayers and residents - the last time Moreland Council made information publicly available about the Hosken Reserve project was in 2016 when plans were to replace a smaller section of the area with plastic turf and leave a substantial part of the Oval for community use. 

The last time residents and ratepayers were actively consulted about use of the Hosken Reserve Oval was in 2009 when Moreland Council carried out a survey which reportedly received fewer than 200 responses and did not contain details about a plan to replace grass with plastic turf or lock residents out of the pitch with fencing. This failure to consult appropriately contravenes the council's own Community Engagement Policy.

This is clearly not good enough and must be rectified. Please sign this petition to demand Moreland Council carry out full community consultations before proceeding with any of the planned works at Hosken Reserve.

With full community consultation we will be able to develop plans to improve Hosken Reserve Oval so that it can be enjoyed by all residents, ratepayers and visitors to Coburg North - including sports clubs, families and neighbours.

#HoskenReserve4all #DoBetterMoreland #CommunitySpace

To get involved and learn more join: Keep Hosken Reserve accessible for all Community Group