Lions Weir Project

Project Overview

The Lions Weir is one of the most recognisable locations in Boddington. The Lions Weir spans the Hotham River to the North of Boddington townsite and was constructed in the 1980s by the Boddington Lions Club with the purpose of providing safe recreational space for the town. Originally the Weir was constructed of earth & rock backed timber. Sometime after the initial construction a concrete cap was placed over the weir and then in recent times, a fish ladder was constructed on the Southern side of the weir to enable fish to continue their progress upstream to breed.

Over time the area upstream of the weir has to varying degrees become subject to sedimentation. According to a 2019 study the volume of accumulated sediment upstream of the weir in the area known as the town pool is approximately 12,000m3. The accumulated sediment has reduced the volume of water that can be stored by the weir and thus reduced the usefulness of the waterbody for its original purpose of recreation for the town. The nature of the warm, shallow water coupled with the elevated levels of available nutrients in the town pool has resulted in occurrences of algal growth.

The Town Pool is home to a diverse range of fauna and flora including the near-threatened freshwater oblong turtle, Pygmy perch, Nightfish and Gilgie. Conservation of the habitat and project impacts on these and other native species needs to be a key consideration for the project.

The nature of the communities’ vision for the use of this space created by the weir is also a subject that will need to be explored by this project. Depending on the proposed uses of the space the remediation action required to achieve these plans will differ.

Why is this project taking place?

The Lions Weir was an area of interest identified by the community during consultation of the 2022 - 2032 Council Plan

The need to undertake this project is driven by:

  • Community interest in rehabilitating the Weir as outlined in the Council Plan
  • An excess build up of sediment in the river, making it unattractive for recreational use
  • Aging infrastructure - No recent structural assessments have been undertaken
  • Enhancing the health of the Hotham River

A number of factors will need to be considered throughout this project, including:

  • Impact on river flora and fauna
  • The structural integrity of the weir
  • How the space should be used
  • Historical and cultural significance

How can I be involved?

The scope of this project will be shaped by the reference group which includes representatives from Council, Boddington Lions Club, Newmont, Peel-Harvey Catchment Council, Traditional Landowners and community members.

The establishment of a reference group enables the community to be directly involved in the development of the Lions Weir project plan, objectives and scope. Feedback provided by the reference group will assist Council in making decisions that respond to concerns and aspirations, and have the best overall outcomes for the community. 

Broader community input will be sought when the project reaches key milestones. 

What has occurred to date?

Two meetings of the Reference Group have taken place in 2023 to date. The 3 key project components were identified as:

  1. The river bed (silted up sections)
  2. The surrounds (pathways and boardwalks)
  3. The weir wall

What is next?

An assessment of the structural integrity of the current Weir will be undertaken to ensure clarity regarding future options. 

Regular meetings of the Reference Group are scheduled.

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