RIVERSIDE WALKWAY

LOCAL residents and visitors to Barham now have a safe elevated view of the Murray River environs.

COMPLETED. Barham Boardwalk Committee members, Anthony Jackson, left, Faye Ashwin and Colin and Peter Membrey. Marty Cincotta was absent.

COMPLETED. Barham Boardwalk Committee members, Anthony Jackson, left, Faye Ashwin and Colin and Peter Membrey. Marty Cincotta was absent.

A decade of community dedication has culminated in the official opening of a redgum timber boardwalk for pedestrians above the river bank.

The border community came together on Friday to acknowledge their fellow citizens who contributed 7500 hours of volunteer work.

The official opening coincided with the Barham-Koondrook Christmas Festival in the nearby shopping centre.

The boardwalk committee shared their gratitude for the public's patience in waiting for the boardwalk's finish. 

Clusters of teens and families wandered along the 170-metre long structure on the fringe of Riverside Park to gaze at the river as the evening sun dipped into the west. 

Boardwalk committee member, Faye Ashwin, said the appearance of the boardwalk in its completion made her emotional. 

"We have worked so hard for this, and to see everyone smile, it's just great," she said. 

"Families can enjoy our idyllic surroundings, and it offers a lovely peaceful entrance into the Summer time and Christmas.

"It's almost hard to comprehend, how far we have come in 10 years." 

The volunteers not only used red-gum timber, but they reshaped the hill adjacent to it in Riverside Park so wheelchair patrons can access the structure. 

Lights on the outer edges of the boardwalk highlight the trees at night. 

The structure makes up 830 square metres of space. 

Fellow committee member, Peter Membrey announced that the Lions Club of Barham-Koondrook had highlighted the committee's efforts by nominating them for an Australia Day award. 

His brother and committee chair, Colin Membrey, said the news was acknowledgement of the dedication of the committee. 

"To be on this journey with the community has been very important for us," Mr Membrey said. 

"I would like to thank the community for how patient you have been with us over this 10 year journey. 

Murray River councillor, Alan Mathers said the nomination by the Lions Club was a landmark achievement on its own. 

"I can't tell you what the outcome will be in regards to the awards, but we will certainly see how that pans out," he said. 

"We want people to use this structure. It will be a place for people to meet and for the community to come together, a place for quiet contemplation, to admire the river, to have celebrations and functions. 

"It will become a central hub for our town."

The committee gave special thanks to the volunteer construction crew and Barham business, O'Brien's Sawmill for their large donation of decking timber. 

Arbuthnot Sawmill at Koondrook was thanked for processing the decking timber so it was the correct thickness and shape to be laid.

Four successful grant applications were made for the project by Kelly Membrey, to whom the committee gave special thanks.

"Lastly, to the Barham community who have supported this project in so many ways, we are pleased to hand this project over to you and we hope you enjoy it for many years to come," Mr Membrey said.

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