Our Aquatic Centre needs a name – what’s your vote?

Published on 11 June 2020

Aquatic Centre render.jpg

Following more than 400 community suggestions, Mornington Peninsula Shire has shortlisted five names for the new Aquatic Centre in Rosebud and now it’s your turn to help us decide!

Council invites the Mornington Peninsula community to have a say in the name, to contribute to this milestone project.

The shortlisted names have been carefully compiled from community suggestions and a naming panel of community members and industry experts.

The shortlist of names include:

Barbawar Aquatic Centre   

“Barbawar” is the local indigenous word for “sting ray”. Sting rays frequently swim in local waters, and the name has an evocative connection to the facility’s architectural design, with its sweeping forms. In a symbolic sense, sting rays are known to represent manoeuvrability, fluidity and a sense of inner guidance.

Drawing on our local indigenous language, the name “Barbawar” helps to tell the story of the Peninsula’s past – celebrating our history as we look to the future. It’s unique in its appeal and is both memorable and easy to pronounce.

Gunawarra Aquatic Centre    

“Gunawarra” is the local indigenous word for “black swan”. It connects to both the historical language of the area and the black swans which gather nearby. Being a water bird, black swans help to connect the name to the main purpose of the facility. They can also represent grace and nobility.

The name draws on 40,000 years of local history through its connection to the language of the Bunurong/ Boon Wurrung people, and it enables us to begin telling their story through this landmark new facility. “Gunawarra” also draws parallels with other place names on the Peninsula – such as Gunnamatta – providing a link for the region.

Rosebud Aquatic Centre    

Rosebud Aquatic Centre is a functional, descriptive name which creates a connection to the township of Rosebud. It’s simple and straightforward in its approach, tapping into an existing sense of recognition for locals and visitors alike. It is easy to pronounce, spell and remember.

It celebrates the existing township name and creates a strong destination facility to help build Rosebud’s identity.

Tides Aquatic Centre       

“Tides” links the facility to the sea, which is a connector for our community. The Mornington Peninsula is surrounded by three bodies of water, each with their own tidal rhythm. Tides connect us to nature and remind us that change is constant. They represent the strength and power of water, yet the name also brings with it a peaceful, dependable feel.

On a practical note, “Tides” is also succinct, simple and easy to both say and spell.

Yawa Aquatic Centre

“Yawa” is the local indigenous word for “swim”, or “to swim”. It is a simple and unique name which represents the purpose of the facility and is both easy to pronounce and easy to spell. “Yawa” is implicitly local and draws on a language which brings over 40,000 years of history.

“Yawa Aquatic Centre” has both a sense of integrity and a sense of fun, and opens up opportunities to engage people of all ages in a warm and inclusive name. In drawing on the local indigenous language for the name, it also creates an opportunity to tell the story of our past and start a conversation about indigenous language and culture for our future.

The Shire is seeking a name that will create a connection with the Peninsula community through place and environment with an approachable, welcoming and positive feel.

Results from the community vote will help inform Council’s final decision of the new Aquatic Centre name with preference voting welcome until Thursday 9 July 2020.

Mornington Peninsula Shire Mayor Councillor Sam Hearn said that the naming of the centre will be a significant milestone, bringing us one step closer to opening the doors.

“In amongst everything that’s been going on in recent months, the continued progress of this Aquatic Centre is something to be really excited about,” Cr Hearn said.

“It has been wonderful to receive so much community input on the name and we’re looking forward to coming to a final decision soon”.

Seawinds Ward Councillor Simon Brooks said “It was inspiring to see the variety of names suggested by the community with a broad range of themes including connection to place, the landscape, history and local Aboriginal culture.”

Seawinds Ward Councillor Antonella Celi said “as the community gets busy voting on a name, there is anticipation building up in wait for the doors to open at the Aquatic Centre. This fantastic facility will offer our community an accessible place to gather and connect, look after their wellbeing and most importantly, go for a dip and have some fun!”

Seawinds Ward Councillor Frank Martin said “what I love about this centre is that it’s an inclusive place for all, no matter your ability, catering to such a wide range of interests. The community has done such a great job helping us get to where we are and I have no doubt they will help us again with choosing the perfect name”.

Vote on the shortlist of five possible names for the new Aquatic Centre until Thursday 9 July 2020: mornpen.vic.gov.au/haveyoursay.

All Aboriginal names included in the shortlist were endorsed by the Bunurong/Boon Wurrung Traditional Owners.

The name with the majority of votes will be presented as the preferred name of the Aquatic Centre, for consideration and final endorsement by the Mornington Peninsula Shire Council.

Photo: Artist impression of the new Aquatic Centre in Rosebud. Click photo to download. 

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