Above average rainfall combined with compacted ground from heavy machinery during the recent construction period have left Glen Huon oval completely water-logged.
This week the South West Football League decided to relocate the weekend’s football fixture away from the ground due to the oval surface being unplayable.
Concern has been raised about whether the situation could have been prevented as part of the $6.6 million in improvements to Glen Huon Reserve by the Shire of Dardanup.
CEO Mark Chester said a range of measures had been taking place over the past couple of weeks to try and protect the playing surface.
A more long-term solution to the problem was being investigated in consultation with the football executive but would require an additional injection of funds.
“The situation we have now at Glen Huon Oval is the result of a combination of unfortunate factors,” Mr Chester said.
“Low lying land, a ground that has been compacted by heavy machinery and vehicle movement during the recent construction phase plus an unusually high level of rainfall in a short period of time have resulted in parts of the ground being underwater.”
In 10 days, we have received half the average rainfall for August. A deluge on Wednesday caused flooding in many areas throughout our region, particularly associated with the Brunswick River breaking its banks.
Prior to this week’s heavy rainfall, the Shire has been pumping water away to remove pooling in front of the new buildings.
The oval has been earth quaked every four weeks in an attempt to open up the soil profile to reduce surface water prior to the start of the season.
The ground is inspected and the surface is repaired weekly. Low areas are top dressed and divots replaced.
Mr Chester said one long-term solution to the problem would mean removing the ground’s top clay level of soil and replacing with a more free-draining sand.
Installation of sub-level drainage was another option subject to funding.
“We’ll continue to investigate how we can improve the playing surface at Glen Huon Oval with a solution that will balance the competing objectives of cost and potential need to close the ground for a period of time,” Mr Chester said.
“In the meantime, I would ask the community not to overlook the significant improvement to community facilities that have taken place as part of this project,” Mr Chester said.
Included in the redevelopment of Glen Huon Reserve have been:
- Football Pavilion – 490m2 with licensed bar, commercial kitchen, function room and elevated viewing of the playing fields
- Football Change rooms -390m2 Four team change rooms, two umpire change rooms, warm up room, first aid room, enclosed coach’s box and score keeper’s box
- Softball Pavilion – 450m2 with licensed bar, commercial kitchen, function room and elevated viewing of playing fields
- Re-located and upgraded playground, still under construction
- Car parks.