Jasmine Ritter competes at the Aquis Champions Tour in the Gold Coast hinterland in April.
Jasmine Ritter competes at the Aquis Champions Tour in the Gold Coast hinterland in April.

Council says it's time to move Yeppoon Showgrounds

IT'S been under consideration for years and now Livingstone Shire Council says it's time to seriously investigate moving the Yeppoon Showgrounds to Barmaryee.

Land off Milroy Drive and Stanley Avenue has been identified as a suitable site and with unanimous backing of councillors, state government funding will now be sought to evaluate the proposal.

The new showgrounds would have expanded capacity to run an agricultural show, but at the heart of the council's plan lies a facility capable of hosting national and international equestrian events.

Close proximity to the racecourse and pony club would facilitate a dedicated regional equestrian sports precinct, which deputy mayor, NIgel Hutton said would allow equestrian athletes to train on the Capricorn Coast and open up further sports tourism opportunities.

Mayor Bill Ludwig said discussion about relocating the showgrounds dated back to the early 2000s, but the research needed to be done.

"We can't find out if we don't do the homework," Cr Ludwig said.

"This funding would allow us to do the feasibility study...to evaluate and advance plans."

The current proposal affects only the showgrounds and it was envisaged that other users of Stevensen Park, including the markets, would not be impacted or move "unless they wanted to".

Cr Ludwig said the show society "was excited that this motion is coming to the table" and Keppel MP, Brittany Lauga had agreed to fully support the funding application.

His comments were yesterday endorsed by Yeppoon Show Society president, Ken Landsberg who said they had been pushing for the move and for an equestrian centre for some time.

"We've outgrown the area in town and parking is a terrible problem," he said.

"If we had more room we could have more events, and we could overflow to the pony club next door."

Mr Landsberg said in all the discussions he had been part of, he was not aware of any opposition to the idea.