Recreational fishers unite to save Upper Teddington Reservoir

Recreational fishers in the northern Grampians region of Victoria are campaigning to halt the decommissioning the Upper Teddington Reservoir. 

The Upper Teddington Reservoir located in Stuart Mill, was built 130 years ago and has been a popular recreational fishing spot for locals and visitors alike for generations. The ‘top lake’ has been stocked with Brown and Rainbow Trout at regular intervals since 1990 but is due to be decommissioned by Parks Victoria due to safety concerns and lack of funding. 

The reservoir manager, Parks Victoria said its primary focus is managing the risk of the aging infrastructure of the reservoir. A Parks Victoria spokesperson said ‘a decision has been made to decommission rather than investing in more costly repairs and ongoing maintenance’.

The reservoir is a popular Brown trout fishing spot and is also important for tourism in the region with cyclists, bird watchers and campers travelling from all parts of Victoria and Australia to enjoy the tourist magnet. 

The President of the Stuart Mill Water Supply Inc. Danny Lloyd said ‘the top lake is not just a reservoir, it’s a lifeline to the community. The water in the reservoir is a draw card for fishing and other outdoor activities and the kids who come and visit just love it.’ Lloyd claimed that there has been little consultation with the Stuart Mill community over the issue. ‘There has been no consultation with this, and it’s purely a Parks Victoria problem and they just don’t want to invest the money,’ said Lloyd. 

Stuart Mill residents have joined forces in protesting Parks Victoria’s decision, and the lack of consultation with the community. A community Facebook group which has over 550 members has begun campaigning for parliamentary intervention. 

VRFish EO Ben Scullin is proud of the passion that recreational fishers have shown in defending access to their important waterways. “The lack of consultation is disappointing, though not surprising. VRFish will advocate for the management of Upper Teddington to be placed in the right hands and that funding is available for continued use of this fantastic fishing and camping gem”.

Upper Teddington Reservoir- Sally McIntyre
Upper Teddington Reservoir- Sally McIntyre

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