MUSIC HUB: 1927 playing at Rocky Rocks 2016 at the Music Bowl.
MUSIC HUB: 1927 playing at Rocky Rocks 2016 at the Music Bowl. Chris Ison ROK240416crock3

Council reveals impending future for Rocky Music Bowl

THE future of Rockhampton's Music Bowl is unfolding with Mayor Margaret Strelow's announcement yesterday afternoon of plans to demolish the sound shell by Christmas this year.

Due to "fundamental problems" including extensive rust damage within the shell's steel frame, which is "hard up against the inside casing of the shell", the demolition was cited as an inevitable step towards making the venue safe.

No decision has been made on whether the shell will be rebuilt.

Cr Strelow said although she admired and "deeply appreciated" Cherie Weatherall's community spirit and commitment to the region, "the path forward is not clear cut".

"We can't get at (the rust) to treat it so any solution begins with a demolition of the shell itself," she said.

"Council will be retaining the stage and the toilet facilities underneath the stage but expects to have demolished the shell itself before Christmas, so will hire in a marquee to put on the stage for this year's Carols by Candlelight."

Cr Strelow said a long term problem for the Music Bowl was that big stage shows preferred to travel with their own stage on the back of a truck instead of using the Rockhampton facility.

"Even Daryl Braithwaite mentioned that from the stage when they were here recently," Cr Strelow said.

"Over the past few years council has had very few enquiries for the use of the sound shell even when it was being offered free of charge."

In 2011, the Music Bowl was closed and it was reported council had plans to sell it due to the lack of use, high cost of maintenance and financial viability.

It was re-opened four years later in 2015 when Carols by Candlelight returned.

In 2013 it was revealed that it cost the Rockhampton Regional Council $90,000 a year to maintain the venue.



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