Caravan park closure could ‘kill’ Murray River town

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Barmah sits in the Murray River
Barmah sits in the Murray River and is popular with tourists. PIC: I, Mattinbgn

There are fears that the small Victorian town of Barmah could die if one of its two caravan parks to close,

The town is a popular spot for tourists seeking boating and fishing activities along the Murray River, as well as visiting Barmah National Park.

However, Moira Shire chief executive Mark Henderson said the lease of the Barmah Caravan and Camping Park was to expire on June 30 this year, and efforts to find a recommended long-term park operator had failed.

‘‘Because of this, and the cost to ratepayers of future capital investment and tree safety, officers are recommending closure,’’ he said.

However, Mr Henderson added council had not formally considered the future of the park and until it made a final decision he was unable to comment further.

Barmah has one pub and two caravan parks and, with a permanent population of just 180 people, the town is heavily dependent on tourism.

‘‘There’s nothing else in this town. If we don’t have tourism, we have nothing,” local publican John Powell told the Riverine Herald. “If you want people to come up and see it, they need places to camp … if you take 50% of that away, the town would be dead.’’

Mr Powell said the caravan park was full during Easter, Christmas and school holidays, and he described the decision to close the caravan park as ‘‘totally alien’’ to what councils want to do in promoting small towns.

He is now organising an urgent public meeting at the Barmah Hotel on Sunday to try to launch a campaign to save the park.

·         Have you stayed at the Barmah Caravan and Camping Park? Does the town need two van parks? Comment below


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7 Responses to Caravan park closure could ‘kill’ Murray River town

  1. I thought the council worked for the rate payers. If they need the nomad traffic they should allocate more of their rate payers money to upkeep the camping areas.

    • A lot of Nomads have the best Caravans but do not want to pay more than $11 per night in a well operated Caravan Park in small Murray River areas such as Barmah. Nomads may get the best but their philosophy is PAY NOTHING.

  2. Problem with a lot of these Caravan parks is they charge full dollar regardless of the season. Sure, charge full prices over Easter and Christmas but reduce to $20 per night outside these times, less for a longer stay and they would have a regular, reasonable income all year round. Wanted to go to another van park in a nearby NSW town and it was more than $30 for a night. Sorry, not that rich.

  3. Why doesn’t the council manage the park.

  4. I suggest Council reviews why they have not attracted suitable tenants. More than likely lease arrangements are making it unviable for anyone to accept or be successful. Generally C/P’s along the Murray are extremely popular and Barmah is a beautiful spot.

  5. I’m quite sure that the local council could put part time management in the
    park to run the booking office and keep the amenities block clean. signage could read OPEN FOR BOOKINGS at certain times. Or as in some parks.
    “Find yourself a site and pay at the office ?? pm.

  6. What is the latest news on the closure of the Barmah caravan park

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