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    Sawyer Park is set to undergo scrutiny as part of Horsham Rural City Council’s City to River Masterplan.

Horsham community group to direct oval, park

The future of Horsham’s sporting and outdoor-entertainment heart will be the subject of analysis by and guidance from a community-led group.

Horsham City Oval, and adjacent Sawyer Park, are the next development areas set to undergo scrutiny as part of Horsham Rural City Council’s City to River Masterplan.

The council has called for members of the Horsham public to nominate for a Horsham City Oval-Sawyer Park Community Reference Group, CRG.

The group’s role will be to help establish schematic designs as part of an overall plan. Nominations close 5pm on Monday.

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The area bordered by Firebrace Street on its west, O’Callaghan Parade on its east, Baker Street to its north and the Wimmera River, south, includes an east-west sporting oval reserve, complete with clubrooms, grandstand and other buildings used for tourist information, musical band rehearsals, Men’s Shed and football administration, sporting scoreboards, broadcasting and event catering.

Sawyer Park, an outdoor entertainment area south of the oval reserve is home to Horsham war memorials, Horsham Soundshell, angling clubrooms and a miniature railway circuit. 

The grassed parkland is the former site of brickwork clay pits. 

Development concepts for the area have for several months attracted considerable community debate.

Horsham council communities and place director Kevin O’Brien said a masterplan adopted last year listed a range of ideas to develop the area.

But he added it was the community reference group’s task to move planning from the conceptual stage into designs and schematic plans.

“The CRG that helped develop concept plans-
schematic designs for the riverfront precinct is doing a terrific job and we are looking for a new group of community-minded people to guide this next stage,” he said.

Mr O’Brien said the CRG’s role would also include engaging with the public to ensure planning was fully transparent and inclusive of ongoing feedback.

He said the council’s goal was to preserve the Sawyer Park and Horsham City Oval area as the showpiece for sport and outdoor entertainment in the Wimmera.

“The aim is to upgrade the city oval as Horsham’s premier regional AFL and cricket venue,” he said.

“Upgrades required are likely to include expansion of the size of the playing field, a new multi-purpose pavilion and clubrooms and covered spectator areas.”

Delivery of a second netball court would assist in club training and matches. 

“Planning for the future of Sawyer Park will ensure it is fit-for-purpose as a premier events space and meets future demand,” Mr O’Brien said.

People who nominate for the CRG must be able to attend monthly meetings.

People can access an information pack and nomination form on a ‘Have Your Say’ section of the council’s website,, or by calling Kathy Newton on 5382 9712 or emailing

The entire September 16, 2020 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!