Romsey in Woiwurrung Country
Parks & Leisure Australia Award Park of the Year, Victoria, 2023
The Romsey Ecotherapy Park is a remarkable community-led initiative that has transformed an abandoned historic school site into a unique and regionally significant space for health, wellness and recreation. The park was developed over three stages with support from various stakeholders, including State and Federal governments, Macedon Ranges Shire Council, local community banks, Romsey Ecotherapy Park Inc., and the broader Romsey community.
What sets this park apart is its emphasis on inclusivity and its diverse range of features. Its ‘Active Nature Playspace’ invites physical challenges amongst the trees with balancing logs, a thrilling 40-meter flying fox, and an adventurous climbing forest. In the ‘Sensory Therapeutic Space’, raised garden beds and sensory plants engage the senses with soothing water features. The ‘Creative Nature Space & Woodland Buffer’ sparks imaginative play with water activities, sandpits, and captivating art installations. The ‘Picnic Area’ offers a perfect setting for gatherings, while the ‘Arts and Culture Space’ serves as a dynamic hub for events and performances.
The park promotes health and well-being for all ages and abilities, offering accessible and diverse recreational experiences. It also highlights sustainability with features such as solar lighting, stormwater management and the use of recycled materials. The integration of art installations and sculptures from local artists adds a unique touch, making it a destination of cultural significance.
The Romsey Ecotherapy Park reflects the strong community spirit and vision, addressing the need for quality open space and offering a space for relaxation, recreation, and therapeutic benefits. Its success and significance lie in being a community-driven and community-owned project that enhances the lives of residents and attracts visitors from the broader region.