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Bundaberg Rotary gates get a makeover

Bundaberg Rotary Gates
Bundaberg Rotary Club members Peter Bowden, John Eriksen, Matt Griffiths and Peter Gardiner working hard to give the Rotary Gates a facelift.

Bundaberg Rotary Club members were hard at work on Sunday morning restoring the Rotary Gates at Tantitha Park.

The first set of Rotary gates were first installed at Tantitha Park almost 80 years ago, and both sets have an extensive history including being through flood waters.

The last time the Rotary Gates were painted was just days before the 2013 floods, which saw most of the gates go under water.

Bundaberg Rotary historian Grant Harrison said they would like to know more about the Rotary Gates and they are calling for the community to send in photos and memories of the historical pieces.

He said the first gates were established in 1941, and then in 1953 it was suggested that the club might consider the improvements to the local park, and Bundaberg Rotary’s intention was to convert the area in to a children’s playground.

Grant said club members spent many hours working on the site, planting grass and painting, over the years.

Bundaberg Rotary Gates
Bundaberg Rotary incoming-President Susan Marstaeller with Bundaberg Rotary historian Grant Harrison, and members Chris Palmer and Frank Hayes working hard to restore the Bundaberg Rotary Gates at Tantitha Park.

“I remember we painted the gates in 1992, and I think this is the third time they've been painted since then,” Grant said.

He said the Rotary Gates and land were donated by former mayor of Bundaberg G L Buss, and the park was opened by the late Sir Angus Mitchell, a former Rotary International President.

In addition to the playground, the club was instrumental in influencing the laying down of the tennis courts, and the establishment of the Tantitha bowling green.

The fountain was donated by a building contractor and the cost of installation defrayed by the club.

The efforts of the club resulted in the formation of an attractive park from what was an eyesore and the establishment of a safe place for children to play.

Divisional representative Cr Tracey McPhee said it was wonderful to see the members taking pride and restoring the local piece of history.

“It is great Bundaberg Rotary Club is restoring this piece of history, and keeping it looking good,” Cr McPhee said.

Bundaberg Rotary Gates
Bundaberg Rotary incoming-President Susan Marstaeller with current Bundaberg Rotary President Matt Griffiths helping to restore the Bundaberg Rotary Gates at Tantitha Park.

Incoming Bundaberg Rotary President Susan Marstaeller said there was current 18 active members in the club and they were also seeking more members; she said to find out more contact the group via their Facebook page.

Current Bundaberg Rotary President Matt Griffiths said anyone in the community with photos of the gates throughout time could email them to him via: [email protected]

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