Pomborneit recovering from inferno

Corangamite Shire Council recreation manager Trev Greenberger, left, and Pomborneit Cricket Club president Dave Murphy at Pomborneit’s revamped cricket ground.

A redevelopment of Pomborneit’s cricket ground is almost complete, two years after a Black Saturday bushfire tore through the area west of Colac.

The 1000-hectare fire, which ignited on February 7, 2009, left Pomborneit’s oval unplayable just four weeks before the end of the cricket season.

A State Government bushfire relief grant of $27,000 helped the club replace its oval fences, practice nets, travelling irrigator, tank and pump, re-seed the oval and repair the club room’s window seals, which melted in the blaze.

The club planted young dutch elm and maple trees to replace the towering cypresses that once stood south of the oval.

Corangamite Shire Council received $77,000 in memorial funding.

The ground’s recovery will be complete after Corangamite Shire Council builds a pull-off from the Princes Highway, erects a memorial sign to commemorate Black Saturday and constructs a barbecue shelter on the club’s grounds.

Council recreation manger Trev Greenberger said he expected to finish the project before Easter.

The government grants also helped upgrade Pomborneit’s Country Fire Authority bore and generator, and Pomborneit’s community hall, which was a recovery centre after Black Saturday.

The Pomborneit-Weerite bushfire burnt pastures, buildings and animals but claimed no lives.

Pomborneit Cricket Club president Dave Murphy said the community had rallied to bring the cricket ground back to life.

He said re-sowing the oval had improved its playing surface by “100 per cent”.

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