Jenny Darling, Point Lonsdale

On 3/2/20 5:06 pm, Jennifer Darling wrote to:
Carmel Christensen &

Dear PLonQ (do you mean Plonk?)
In response to your article in The Rip dated February 2020, “PLonQ forged ahead”

People pouring in with their cars over Christmas and New Year. From housing developments as far away as Armstrong Creek. The Point. The Golf estate. Airbnb. Every parking spot taken.

Long queues in the supermarkets and cafes. The human flood persists throughout the year on weekends, during events and on public holidays.

Traders exhausted and fractious with each other. Visitors expecting to be served yesterday. Entitled. Children wailing, their parents glued to screens. Pampered dogs allowed to commandeer the footpaths and airwaves with their anxious barking. Do I really think like this? Keep smiling.

Congratulations. You now have what you wanted. Trade, trade, trade.

But where is the opportunity for frail locals to bring their vehicles in to pick up groceries. Or have a coffee. Oh thank goodness that the IGA delivers. And a certain cafe delivers coffee to long time oldies. And oldies car pool.

Where is a forward thinking traffic management plan? Have you lobbied McHarry’s bus company to replace the bus stops it removed? Lobbied it to update its route to take in The Point and Golf Estate so that unlicensed students and non drivers can commute to Geelong?

Thank goodness I can ride my bicycle around the neighbourhood.

You may want to forge ahead but I want you to take a breath and consider the monster that’s emerged from its egg.
The Borough is an environment first, a place for people to live and support each other and isn’t a destination or the exclusive preserve of trade.

Have any of the traders considered that the proposed ferry terminal will be huge and ugly, block the view to the water and house more pointless retail outlets? I haven’t read what you’re thinking.

I can hear myself becoming more curmudgeonly as I grow older. Rant, rant, rant. I’m unrepentant. Wake up people.

6 Feb, 2:20pm
CC:  Carmel Christensen, Borough of Queenscliffe

Dear Jennifer, Council and Carmel,

Jennifer, please find PlonQ’s response below.
Carmel, PLonQ will be posting Jennifer’s letter with our response on the website. If you wish to publish Jennifer’s letter it is PLonQ’s preference that you direct readers to our response on the website.

Wishing you all a lovely day.

Dear Jennifer,

Thank you for your comments regarding PLonQ (yes with a ‘Q’ for Point Lonsdale Queenscliff) – we are most appreciative of community feedback.

PLonQ has been set up to look at ways Point Lonsdale and Queenscliff can come together and celebrate/showcase all that the Borough has to offer. One of the most important aspects being respect for our community.

PLonQ is not a traders’ group.

PlonQ only came into being at the end of 2019. So we were a little surprised that you feel the Group is to blame for your daily inconvenience and displeasure while living in this beautiful place. We are pleased though that you continue to smile!

It is a fact that residents and trade need to co-exist. ‘Frail locals’ and all residents would be unable to enjoy coffee, or do their shopping if we don’t share our town.

If left to the resident spend alone, all our traders would have to close – there would be no supermarket, chemist, post office, newsagent or other amenities. This would mean all residents would have to head to Ocean Grove and other areas to do their shopping. And this would be far more difficult to manage on a bicycle and an unrealistic town scenario.

Many businesses in the Borough are on the market and/or closed including those located in iconic buildings like the Hotel Q and The Tavern.

This gives a sad and neglected feel to the otherwise beautiful streetscape which we all love.
Out of the 52 weeks of the year there are realistically only 4 – 6 weeks that we share with crowds.

As a Point Lonsdale resident you will also know there are several empty shops and sadly, the beach side village no longer even has a fish and chip shop which, yes served tourists, but also locals all year round.

A balance is what PLonQ feel is important here. We can’t comment about the Hot Rod Weekend as it isn’t our initiative but we can certainly take aspects of your concerns into future planning.

Events considerate of the environment, the capacity of the town, the placement of these events throughout the year to support trade through the quietest months and ones that incorporate safety are on PLonQ’s agenda.

You raise many points about transport, environment, the ferry, etc you can definitely ‘read what we’re thinking’ by reading our minutes which are available at this link:

Please continue to read our monthly minutes as we tackle and incorporate the matters you specify in our plans. Your opinion is valuable. Considerate responses are welcome.

Rest assured Jennifer, we are awake and your voice has been heard! Your email and this reply will be posted on our website.

Soula Mantalvanos
President, PLonQ Inc
(with Trish Berry – Vice President, Theo Mantalvanos – Treasurer,  Zelda Walters – Secretary)