Community backs RSL

A previous Anzac Day Dawn Service at the was memorial and in front of the Kooweerup Community Centre. Picture: ON FILE

By Corey Everitt

You don’t have to look far for support in Kooweerup, after it was revealed council charged the RSL a fee to use the community hall for their gunfire breakfast, the local Bendigo Bank has offered to cover the cost.

Last week, the Gazette reported on the outrage of Kooweerup RSL after they were charged to use the community centre for their post-dawn service gunfire breakfast this past Anzac Day.

Word spread around town of the news and reached the local branch of Bendigo Bank.

Branch manager Andrew Weybury has only been in the job for 12 weeks, but believes through and through that the bank is about ‘giving back’.

Shortly after hearing the news, the branch called up RSL secretary Beverly Edwards with the offer to cover the costs of using the facility.

“There are plenty of people unhappy about it and it was one of our staff that alerted me to it and we gave Beverly a call straight away,” Mr Weybury said.

“It’s a bit ridiculous that they had to cover the cost and our role here is to give back to the community so we are currently getting an invoice off Beverly and we will cover the cost for them.”

The bank wasn’t the only one to reach out, the Kooweerup Masonic Lodge’s David Bull contacted Ms Edwards to say they can use their facility ‘anytime’ free of charge, which is conveniently located close to the war memorial.

Ms Edwards was blown away by the response.

“We thank the community for the help in response, it’s an outstanding gesture of support for the RSL,” she said.

For locals like Mr Weybury it’s a small gesture for a large cause.

“Beverly is hoping next year they won’t have to pay for a facility, but we have said if they need to they can give us a call,” he said.

“Our armed forces have given a lot and it’s a small token for what they have done for the country.

“We are more than happy to help.”