View Full Version : Future of Somerset & big W

26-02-2002, 07:22 PM
Have been told on good authority ??? that future access could be rather bleak.

Supposedly, in the near future, the controlling body intends to shut down the public areas, then wait to see what the reaction will be, and unless it's very vocal, keep the doors closed.

Any comments from an authoritative source ??? ???


27-02-2002, 04:30 AM
Hi Luc, at the SWFSA meeting the other night, Mark from the SEQ W Corp informed us that one of the boat ramps is no longer open to the public. It has been leased to a private fishing club who now has sole access to this part of Wivenhoe. Same will apply to others around the dam eventually. They intend to keep a few open for the public.

Somerset still has access. Kirkleigh will eventually have a private sector controlling it.

Regards, Randall.

27-02-2002, 12:34 PM
So, the SWSFA will stock Wivenhoe, but access will gradually become restricted to the members of private clubs.

Mmmm, how is this justified ? More importantly how do we voice our objections to it ?

Randall, how was this news received at the SWSFA meeting ?

27-02-2002, 03:03 PM
Hi Graham, mate, we have known for a while that this would eventually happen and I guess we have had a while also to get used to the idea.

Most of us think it stinks but the corporation is just like any other enterprise, it always wants to cut costs and show more profit. They are no longer interested in maintaining the facilities.

We will continue to stock both dams, as we have a duty to do this. One never knows what may happen in the future.

More on this as news becomes available.

PS: You can read a release artical in the QT about it today. Mc Leans Point closed from Feb 1st.

Regards, Randall.

28-02-2002, 07:49 AM
Tuesday, February 26, 2002

Disguised tax
THE South East Queensland Water Board is imposing its hated $5 picnic tax by stealth.
A public outcry forced the commercialised water board to indefinitely defer its picnic tax plan last year, so now it has shut the public out instead.
The core of the problem is the $1 million a year it costs the board to run camping grounds and picnic areas at Wivenhoe Dam.
Since it canít raise that money via the picnic tax, it is slashing its costs by passing control of selected areas to special interest groups, such as rowing and fishing clubs.
Those groups in turn allow only their members to use the areas, meaning the public must pay via a membership fee to use fishing and barbecue areas they previously could access for free.
This will end up costing many people more than the proposed picnic tax.
And thatís only if theyíre fortunate enough to know who to contact to pay up before turning up to find the gates to their favourite spot locked.
Itís a user-pays system gone mad when applied to such basic facilities as boat ramps, barbecue plates and shelter sheds.

As far as i am concerned if we NOW have to pay to access these waters by JOINING a club that has a lease to what ever section is bullshit. What do we have now private waters ????? or are these waters still public ????.

Take em of the stocked impoundement program if they can only be accessed by joining a club.

So now we pay a
Stocked impoundemnt licence
Boating permit
Now a fee to one of a special interest group , rowing club or a fishing club. Thats damn near blackmail .......... you can only fish here if you pay us.

I guess in the future we will all go into a ballot with only 100 anglers allowed access at cost of $$$$$$$

Sits back with interest to what will happen at Somerset as i figure this has already been done just we not been told yet.

28-02-2002, 09:22 AM
hi guys

>:( >:( i for one think this impoundment should be canned from the sip$ 22000 could be well distributed among the remaining fishable acsessable impoundments aint got time for narrow minded gov /privatecorperation or what ever they are bodies

thats my view thank you >:( >:(
cameron :-*

28-02-2002, 12:11 PM
Cannot agree more redback ......................

28-02-2002, 05:55 PM
hey brian
how have you been >:( realy gets you blood boiling this water board crap ive been dealing with same issues up here for the last 12 months just about ready to can the stocking of one local impoundment no loss to me realy just the community
catch up soon
cheers cameron

28-02-2002, 06:35 PM
Have to agree with you Redback, If Somerset & Wivenhoe are destined to become "private" waters because only a select few who belong to "clubs" can access it, NONE of the sip money should go to those dams.

Let the "club" members stock the dam.

This whole thing is bullshit !!! Public moneys build the dam and the public owns it and should be able to access the water/fish.

This is the thin edge of the wedge and if anglers don't jump up and down about it in a big way to let the government that this is simply not on, anglers will pay more and more for less and less.


01-03-2002, 04:09 AM
Yes anglers need to speak up otherwise this is the thin edge of the wedge. Lets face it you basiclly have it at North Pine now. No intention meant here on knocking the stocking group.

But you have a sailing club and the stocking group with the only access to the waters of North Pine.

If you want to access the dam you must be a member of the sailing club or lucky enough to have scored a ballot to allow you to fish the dam from the stocking group.

Public Dam NOT private ................ leave it that way

Howdy redback long time no see .......... will have to catch up sometime :)

01-03-2002, 08:32 AM
A couple of irrelevant points of clarification.

I don't think that you can include/compare the boating scheme at north pine dam in with what is happening at Big W and Som.. To start with the NP boating scheme took five years of planning and applications to the water board before they gave approval to get the scheme up and running and the lease was set up on land that had no public access to begin with. This was done to raise money for stocking therefore the group asked to be exempt from the SIP's scheme.

Second RE SIPs reallocation, It would be counter productive to stop the stocking group from recieving SIP's money now so that in a few years time with a change of government and or management, access is returned creating a whole in the stocking regime. I guess that would allow someone to winge and bitch about how poor the fishing is and how they are not getting their value for money.
If you don't want Sm. or big W to get your SIP's money then don't tick them on the SIP's form

Yes its terrible that they are closing all the access points down, yes we should do our best to keep access open and make our opinions/voices heard.

At the end of the day Somerset and Wivenhoe should still be stocked with SIP's money Why kick the stocking group in the teeth for something they have no control over. They have done a bloody good job so far building an excellent fishery it would be short sighted and ludicrous to do anything that would reduce the current stocking levels and reduce the potential of this fishery.

hearsay and misinformation can only hurt the cause.

my two cents worth


01-03-2002, 08:34 AM
Guys, you may be missing the point.
Somerset will always have public access. It is the most heavily fished impoundment out of all the other impoundments on the SIP.

The plan to privatize Kirkleigh has nothing to do with its closure, reather, this facility will be enhanced with better facilities. There may be a cost for entrance however!!!. The new owners will be encouraging anglers, not turning them away.

Wivenhoe, although with limited access, will still be a public Dam. Will probably be electric only for many years to come.
A fishing club has been enjoying private status for many years already in case no one was aware.

The Corp plans on turning over only one more ramp to lease.
Nothing much will change really.

Thats my understanding.

Regards, Randall SWFSA

The Spit will always be open and no charges apply here. Except for the current boating charge.

01-03-2002, 08:55 AM
hi guys
idont have a problem with any stocking group i have been amember of one for five yrs now and will stay amember for years to come i know how much hard work goesinto keeping it going just geting sick of the bullshit isuppose
cheers guys

01-03-2002, 10:34 AM
As i said Simon no intention meant at knocking the north pine group.

What i was trying to point out there are only two ways to access this dam, club membership via the sailing club or via the ballot system currently in place at the moment.

I feel this will be how many if not all of our impoundments will go albeit the powers to be may leave a token spot open so recreational persons cannot say we are denied total access, maybe.

As for sips i don't think it really matters what you tick to be honest just a feel good thing as far as i'm concerned. How the hell do we know the fingerlings are going in the numbers by the way we tick ???. As for keep a tick in for the big W and Somerset, not from my pen, maybe IF and WHEN we are %100 sure what is happening at these waters will i change.

As for in a few years a new government / management group things may change ...................... holly shit you are a hopeful one. As for me, sorry, once in never out, other than more out of our pockets.

As for Somerset Randall I will just sit back as see what happens although i'm betting the powers to be are seeing what reaction and flack they get from these closures at big W cause, before they try on Somerset.

01-03-2002, 11:14 AM
As for Somerset Randall I will just sit back as see what happens although i'm betting the powers to be are seeing what reaction and flack they get from these closures at big W cause, before they try on Somerset. #

Brian, mate, I dont think I`ve ever see you so passionate about a topic before!! (Oh yeah, thats right. I have shared a rum with you on the banks of the Baffle around a campfire!! How could I forget that conversation!! ;-) )

You and I go back a ways and I know you well enough to know you are usually right!!

However, I think, after conversations with the Corp, that they really dont give a rats about what anglers think about them closing some access points. Thats the Corp in general, not the individuals I spoke to.

We as a group have zero say in this matter. Thier not watching to see how anyone reacts. They have made thier corporate decission and thats the way it will be.

However again, you may be surprised in future developments regarding this impoundment!! (Wivenhoe);-)
Sworn to secrecy right now.

Regards, Randall.

PS: Need to talk to you regarding Voodoos. Can you email your ph number?

01-03-2002, 04:38 PM
We do at that randall go back a ways, and yes the rum at baffle was good, was that a camp fire, wondered what that glow was :o :o.

And i will say i don't relly give a shit who i upset either, i will say what i feel and if people agree that fine if thet dont that's fine ............. free country..... so they say !

Don't know how to do that other shit. below pasting shit :)

You say " ......... However again, you may be surprised in future developments regarding this impoundment!! (Wivenhoe) Sworn to secrecy right now.

This is basiclly what i am getting at ...................... the behind closed doors shit,good,bad and indifferent ......

Of course by now you should know i will speck my mind right or wrong. Nothing like a rum on the baffle to see that ;D :o :o :o

I'm not a behind the scene guy i cop that and hate it with a passion ,cop enough of that shit at work .................. and speak my mind there as well ....................... lets put the cards on the table ?????????????????? what the hell is happening because if you figure i'm pissed off .......... I have just begun .....and will raise hell if need be.

If the powers to be or for that matter the people in the know spill it ....... and stop pussy footing about the better and stand up and say what is happening ????????????? and say what is the future of these TWO impoundments ??????????? we amy then see the facts ............. not the secret service shit.

01-03-2002, 04:46 PM
oppps sorry forgot this bit

"However, I think, after conversations with the Corp, that they really dont give a rats about what anglers think about them closing some access points. Thats the Corp in general, not the individuals I spoke to."

I think we have answered the question here they don;t give a rats ........................... corp or not .......... maybe a FULL UNTER change is in order .................... Maybe when Sorley goes the puppets will follow.

02-03-2002, 04:19 AM
Yep, certainly passionate about this one mate!!

What I am involved with regarding the Wivenhoe deal has nothing to do with the decisssion of closure of some access points.

I was merely refering to some private stuff right now.

So I can not reveal any secret intentions of the Corp simply because there is nothing to reveal. The Corp has made thier decision and its final. Its all out in the open and has always been. It was common knoledge ages ago in stocking group circles but alas, there are only a few of us compared to the thousands who use both impoundments and no one wanted to lobby government or assist in any way to sway the Corps decision. We put the word out when we first learned of thier intentions, but no one seemed to care then.

Comes down to $ Brian and the SEQWC will be saving heaps on this decision. Right or wrong, love it or hate it, the deals done and instigated.

For now. ;-)

Who knows what may change in the future?

Regards, Randall.

02-03-2002, 08:51 AM
Hi Guys,
With he recent closure of Maclean Point, I'm in no way supportive of it, but you need to note that the concrete ramp at Logans Inlet is only about a kilometer or so away from there.
The Maclean Point launching area is mud only & if the dam isn't 100% full its just about 4x4 only. There's virtually no facilities at Maclean Point (sweat box porta loo & 1 table) & the visitation to this spot is virtually nil.
I'd rather see places like this shut to ensure Logans & Hamon Cove stay open, which these spots certainly will.

It's not just for saving $$$ on maintenance, its also the sky rising insurance & public liability costs that come into it.

Kirkleagh & Logans Inlet WILL stay open for ever. Any lease holder will have to maintain public access as a pre-requisite of the lease.

As Randall indicated, there IS something in the wind from the SEQWCorp, but info thus far is very limited. I'm leaning towards them dropping the boating permit for Somerset & Big W or perhaps a commitment by them to spend more $$$ on fish stocking. That would be seen as some form of compensation for a couple of less used access points being closed.
For the record, the fees collected by the boating permit in the past have been utilites for purchasing fingerlings. Therefore, our mates the skiers, have been paying for fingerlings for the fishos. If the boating permit IS dropped, we can kiss goodbye to $30 000 to $40 000 worth of fish in Somerset/Wivenhoe/Samsonvale every year!!

Is that what we really want? Less cost but far less fish in the water??????
Maybe some folks would prefer that SWFSA Inc stop stocking these 2 great lakes all together, tell the water board we don't want anglers to have access at all, & shut the whole bloody lot down.
With all the bitching, I'm leaning towards voting that way!!! >:( Then I'll stock the bloody place out of my own pocket, lease a bit of land & have a fleet of charter boats on there & laugh like hell at those on the other side of the fence that bitched the place into closing.

That is all the pissing & moaning is going to acheive folks. :(

Don't you see you are playing into their hands by calling for stocking to be stopped etc? That's what they want. >:(

Better yet, I'd rather the shit stirrers simply said thanks to SWFSA for their decade & a half of effort & then went on their way. I've almost had enough of the crap from arm chair critics that reserve the right to comment, yet won't get off their arse & do a bit of work for the fishery. (not just talking about folks here, but across the board)
I can tell you if I go, I'll take alot of others with me. >:(

That's my view! Love it or hate it.


02-03-2002, 12:18 PM
Although we have known that this was going to happen for some time it is still a blow for anglers particullarly those with children who want to show them the joy of fishing. It will soon be too expensive to have a family fishing day! ??? :'( :'( :'( >:(

On that subject is there any word on the closure of Captain Logan's Inlet/Camp/Lumley Hill areas? or are they still operational?? ??? ??? ???

02-03-2002, 12:39 PM
Although we have known that this was going to happen for some time it is still a blow for anglers particullarly those with children who want to show them the joy of fishing. #It will soon be too expensive to have a family fishing day! ??? :'( :'( :'( >:(

On that subject is there any word on the closure of Captain Logan's Inlet/Camp/Lumley Hill areas? #or are they still operational?? ??? ??? ???

Hi Gran38,
Capt Logans & Lumley Hill are & will remain, open to the public. :D
The smear campaign about Wivenhoe & Somerset gives the impression that they are closed up lock, stock & barrell, this is certainly not te case. :o

I hope that clears up some of the wrong impressions intentionally bantied about.



04-03-2002, 04:40 PM
I wonder if a commitment to spend more on restocking is an increase in fees ..........or the boating permit. ?

I have never critised a stocking group for thier efforts and unless they change i will not. Hopefully I'm not classed as one of the shit stirrer, but alas if i am classed as that ................ live with it.

As far as i can see it ..................... they are the managers of the public waters under thier control .......... if what they do DOES not agree to the majority one would figure something has to be done, maybe what has been done is what will stir a few into action, who knows.

I wonder how many people camp / fish this place a year ????????

I have more to say but alas i have to go ..............but later i will finish.

04-03-2002, 05:31 PM
HI Brian,
There's alot of mis-information getting around that seems to get bigger in the telling each time round. There are some sabateurs that are flinging crap on Big W to bolster thier claims to have this great lake taken off the SIP. (Vein attempt to get a bigger slice of the pie for other locations)
I'm only trying to keep things to the facts.
Mate by all means, speak your mind, that's what this great forum is for. :)
You & both know that we're never going to agree in everything. :-/
I make it my business to keep folks as informed about new things on these locations as they come to light. The recent closure at MacLean Point, while certainly not desirable, has been public knowlege for some time. We are definately trying to keep all other locations open by responsible negotiation & representation (as legitimate stake holders) with the powers that be.



07-03-2002, 11:41 AM
From what I've learned some bits of Wivenhoe are being given over to club (on leases). In return the clubs need to look after the areas, mow the grass etc.

While I'm not happy to see the areas closed off in the first place, I think its way to much to expect club members to pay for the leases, come out, mow grass, maintain toilets, accept legal liability etc in their spare time so that Mr Joe public can turn up and fish. Then if anything goes wrong, having Joe Public's lawyer suing the poor buggers for everything they own from their socks to their houses. I'm not surprised the areas a club only.

It seems to me too few people that complain want to plow the fields, harvest the wheat, mill the flour and bake the bread. They just whinge when they don't get more bread. If the remaining public access points at Wivenhoe aren't to your liking, then find join a club and spend that hour here or there attending meetings or tending the site.

Wivenhoe has the potential to be the best dam in SEQ. Its immense, its got a very regular level, its got interesting features. With a little imaginaton with regards to the species stocked into it, it could be an absolute feature piece for Brissy. They are breeding Jacks, and putting them in northern dams, and Jacks are native to the Brissy so they'd be an obvious species to stock. I know Fitzy is thinking of Barra, Jungle perch and plenty of others. Mary Cod, tarpon, trevally etc. It could be an amazing place for Brissy anglers.

So lets not give up on Wivenhoe, its important to have our say and keep it open. The longer its open to angling the more chance we have getting these interesting species in and rejuvinating it. If its closed because of whinging and indifference then its going to be next to impossible to reopen. These club leases are fairly short term and with a lot of support they could revert to public access, especially when they are finished. Without support the chance is nil.

07-03-2002, 05:03 PM
Colin, all relevant points!!
I guess it appears there is some misunderstanding about public access.

Wivenhoe still has 3 or 4 good access points and they will remain open as far as I understand.

As far as fishing clubs leasing a few boatramps....that`s OK by me. As you say, the club members have to pay the annual lease, mow grass, maintain facilities, change locks (at a high price) every year. Thats a lot of work and money. Good luck to em. If the impoundment is seen to be such a valuable resource, I would join the club and use the facilities. Good point mate.

SWFSA has worked tirelessly to get as much Money as possible to keep these fisheries in top, stocked condition. SIP was introduced and the Stocking group got a good amount in the first year for fish which will go a long way in bringing the numbers up to where they should be in impoundments the size of Somerset and Wivenhoe. There are private groups around who would see this money, and subsequent fish numbers reduced considerably and it does`nt help our cause to hear that anglers are threatening to withdraw thier preferences of S & W from the annual SIP form.

Wivenhoe, as you say, has enormous potential for the future. To negate its worth by a few lousy ramp closures would be a crime. Thankfully there are enough anglers out there to over ride any opposition and continue the good fight.

Wivenhoe will be the jewel in the crown someday. But only because of the few diehards willing to work with the powers that be and stay focussed on the big picture.

07-03-2002, 07:34 PM
Some Facts that dispell the myths.

The facts of the matter are:
-Wivenhoe IS NOT closed off to the public & will ALWAYS retain public access of some degree. Copies of the SEQWCorp's recreation policy were made available last year.
-Hamon Cove, Billies Bay, Logans Inlet, Capt Logans Camp, Lumley Hill, Cormorant Bay, O'Sheas Crossing, Kipper Creek, Dundas Bridges, Somerset Park, Sheepstation Inlet (via the Info Centre) & Hays Landing are ALL still open to the public 7 days/week. There are also public access points in the River above Wivenhoe around Barney's Rocks, Toogoolawah & Harlin as well as the Spillway Common below the wall. Is that not enough to justify continued fish stocking & does this not constitute access?
To date there has been 1 mothballed site, that being Figtree Lookout, which was just that, a lookout.
-Maclean Point was recently leased to the Coominya Fishing Club. This location had relatively little use as there are virtually no facilities (1 sweat box porta loo + 1 table). The boat launching area is a muddy schmozzle at most times & with Logans Inlet approx 1 km away, most anglers/boaties use this spot that boasts top facilities.
-Hays Landing will be leased to the Brisbane Valley Sailing Club in the future.
-Billies Bay was offered to SWFSA Inc, however after some consultation, SWFSA declined due to lack of being able to carry out maintenance required. (While SWFSA are by no means happy about the possible loss of Billies Bay & Hays Landing in the future, they are continuing to negotiate with SEQWCorp as issues arise.)
-Sheepstation Inlet has been leased to the rowing club. This location never allowed boating & the bank fishing was always difficult due to the cables from the rowing lanes, & the prolific weeds.

So we still have 12 access points (not counting the ones in the river above & below) at Wivenhoe. 1 mothballed & 1 leased.

hhhmmmm Seems there's been some very interesting emails flung around this evenning. I trully feel sorry for the misinformed poor souls who have been misguided/tricked into tagging their name onto the rumours. Some rather embarred people around at present. I just let the "facts' be known to those affected. I bet there's gonna be some "please explains" #going on around the traps after this. I'll come back with some more info later.

08-03-2002, 04:01 AM
Fitzy, well done with the FACTS mate!! Until they were all listed in print, it is hard to get a feel for the big picture.

Its much clearer to me now, and hopefully those groups who have been going off half-informed.

I should have known you would have done the homework on all this!!

Once again, excellent work.

Regards, Randall.

08-03-2002, 06:16 PM
Hear, hear to the last two comments!

14-03-2002, 04:05 PM
If that is the case so be it .............. but alas i will wait and see hopefully in the future when ALL is revealed and ALL cards are laid out my opinion will change.

I still do not agree clubs, special interest group to have sole access to certain areas to me this is the thin edge of the wedge.

These are public waters and must stay that way.

I wonder if in the future the cost of joining one of the clubs / special interest groups will be more cost effective than having public access ? .....

14-03-2002, 04:50 PM
Hi Brian,
Fully agree with you on the leasing out side of things. I would rather see Big W stay exactly as it was. My main concern is that the calls for removing Big W from the SIP is putting pressure on the stocking group. If it is taken off (forced upon by outside bodies) I'm fairly sure that NO fish will go in there anymore. Then anglers will have no reason for wanting access. Then with no fishos wanting in, they can simply close all of the gates off. The pressure is mounting, if the stocking group throw it in, then everyone is stuffed, including the Coominya Fishing Club who took the lease at MacLean Point. I've heard comments this week comparing that fishing club to scabs who cross a union picket line. I don't know if that's an accurate description as I can say that the stocking group had a hell of a time deciding if they should take up the offer to lease Billies Bay. They/we ultimately declined if we couldn't keep it open to anyone/everyone. Part of the lease terms are that "members only" were allowed in. What a croc!

We are hopeful (if we can keep our foot in the door) of retaining status as a legitimate stake holder. Then possibly somewhere down the track getting some of these places re-opened to the general public.
At present there are still 4 concrete ramps + 8 or 10 bank access spots open to the public.
One or two closed access spots would be an easier pill to swallow if we could run outboards eh?



16-03-2002, 12:16 PM
The pressure is mounting, if the stocking group throw it in, then everyone is stuffed, including the Coominya Fishing Club who took the lease at MacLean Point. I've heard comments this week comparing that fishing club to scabs who cross a union picket line. I don't know if that's an accurate description as I can say that the stocking group had a hell of a time deciding if they should take up the offer to lease Billies Bay.

As for the above club being classed as scabs i don't agree with that, they took up an option as was open to many others.

I just don't agree with private groups having a lease with people if they want to use that part of the dam must be a member of that club ??.

I still feel it is a thin edge to the wedge.... next year maybe another ramp and so on ................. untill all areas are leased to interested groups.

I do sit back and can only imagine the lease and restrictions placed on them and all the MUST DO's ........... lol

Anyway time will tell what will be.

16-03-2002, 12:44 PM
I could be wrong but I think the members usage only comes down to public liability insurance costs. to get insurance that is remotely affordable the restrictions placed on the groups will be pretty steep and even then there are huge loopholes, at the end of the day its not a cheap thing to do and membership dolars are how the insurance is paid.