Coombes Road Caravan Park proposal to go to VCAT

As expected, immediately following the Surf Coast Shire's refusal to issue a permit for the proposed "Eco Caravan Park" in Coombes Road, the proponent BCR has instructed Norton Rose Fullbright to proceed with an application for the VCAT to review the application.

The hearing will commence at 10.00am on December 8th in  Melbourne. It has been listed to last for 5 days.

If you are interested - these hearings are open to the public. Normally VCAT sits at 55 King St, however, because of building works this hearing may be at another CBD location. Check the VCAT website from 4.30pm on the day prior to the hearing .

A group of residents who live in close proximity to the proposed site have launched a campaign to raise funds for representation at VCAT -


Ø Torquay residents don’t want the mega cabin village

Ø Council voted unanimously to reject the planning permit application for the development

Ø Now the developer has appealed and taken the proposal to VCAT with 1st hearing on 8 Dec

Ø There’s still a very real chance that the mega village of 717 cabins and caravan sites on the corner of Coombes and Ghazeepore Rds will be approved by VCAT - and then there appears no barrier to stop this site being used to house up to 3000 “permanent” residents

Ø This will have a negative impact on your lifestyle amenity and the value of your property, congest our roads and generate significant pedestrian and cycle traffic through your neighbourhood


A small group of local residents have been closely monitoring the progress of this proposed development as it’s moved through Surf Coast Shire planning process and proceeded to VCAT. A number of residents have also lodged grounds with VCAT and will speak against the development.

We’ve been in close contact with Surf Coast Councillors and Planning Officers and attended the practice day hearing at VCAT on Friday 3 October. The developer is throwing all of its corporate muscle at the VCAT hearing and have engaged law firm Norton Rose Fulbright and Stuart Morris QC, former Supreme Court Judge and President of VCAT, as their barrister. This is a formidable team.

The planning law enabling the developer to apply to build a caravan park on Farm Zone land is very recent and this is the first case of this type at VCAT. The Council Planning Officers and the Residents group feel that there are very strong grounds justifying Council’s decision to refuse the application. We want to defend that decision vigorously.


There is still lots of work to do to prepare for the VCAT Hearing scheduled for seven days from Monday 8 December - only nine weeks away. This is what we need help with:

§ Identifying and engaging expert witnesses and representation to support our case

§ Working closely with Council to prepare a strong and co-ordinated defence

§ Raising the more than $20,000 it will take for the legal representation required to help stop this mega cabin park from being approved

 A trust fund has been set up to receive donations. You can make yours in-person at Westpac Torquay at Shop 9, Torquay Central, 8 Gilbert St, or via internet banking at:

Peter Mann Pty Ltd Trust Account BSB: 033-226, Account Nbr 48 2875 Ref 1471630 plus your name


Rebekah Abela 0412 072 572 Mark Mathews 0417 346 138