A dip they’ve all been waiting for

LARA Hayes wasted no time with her floaties and swimmers to take a dip in the Tungamah re-opened pool yesterday.

Lara, 3, was among residents celebrating a victory and finally getting some cool relief as the mercury hovered around 42 degrees.

“Lara’s a bit of a water baby, so she was not happy at all when it was closed,” mother Kirby Hayes said.

“She’s keen to get in there now and splash around.”

The 33-year-old pool at Tungamah Primary School had been closed this summer because the school believed it had no public liability insurance to allow its operation.

After residents spoke to media, a public meeting was called on Tuesday where the school discovered it was, in fact, covered by insurance.

Murray Valley MP Tim McCurdy, the school council and principal Christine Purcell all played a part in getting to the bottom of it.

Mr McCurdy described it as a “sorry saga”.

“The timing was unfortunate given the extreme weather, but with community patience and by working together we have got a good outcome,” he said.

“There are just some protocols to get sorted to make sure we don’t have to go through it again.”

Groundsman John Tyrrell had the job of cleaning the pool ahead of yesterday’s opening.

“I spent eight hours here two days in a row,” he said.

“Many litres of chlorine went into it but it’s perfect now.”

As residents splashed around, Diane Ford reminisced about the early days when volunteers helped build the pool.

“There were men here with picks and shovels, not just diggers,” she said.

“A lot of hard work went into this community asset and it’s worth it if it stays the way it is.”

Resident Jo Smyth agreed, saying it was “built by the community, for the community”.

“It took a lot of rum balls and slices to get where we are today,” she said.

Tungamah resident Heather Tyrrell said it was a good result but a shame the pool had not been open over Christmas when her grandchildren were visiting.

“They were up here every day last year during Christmas, but it’s all good now,” she said.

The pool has also become something of a community meeting place.

A pool committee has been formed to run it.

And everyone is pleased about extended opening hours, from 2pm to 8pm.

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