T-ball stays despite irritated neighbours

Complaints feed into city’s “stuffy” reputation: councillor

Children playing too loudly is no grounds for ending their fun, according to Victoria city council.

“This is about the good and bad of living next to an urban park, and I think we’d all be privileged to live next to a park,” said Coun. Philippe Lucas.

Council had little sympathy from complaints coming from 19 petitioners in the 1600 block of Earle Street. 

“(Neighbours) have experienced one full season of the T-ball diamond and have found that the noise level was unacceptable … and it was infringing on their privacy,” according to the group, dubbed Earle Association of Residents Restoring Reasonably Lovely Evenings. 

The group’s calling for the relocation of the diamond, or for designated days each week where the play stops.

“It goes to the previous reputation as being a stuffy old place,” said Coun. Lynn Hunter. “I find it quite offensive … We’ve got a national crisis of childhood obesity and what the city should be doing, in my view, is providing every opportunity for kids to get outside and run off that energy.” 

Coun. Chris Coleman expressed similar feelings. 

“It’s more than ironic that we are faced with the trauma of sports organizations actually filling our parks and making them work for little kids,” said Coleman. 

The T-ball league has been operating in Hollywood Park for 50 years, and has 300 kids enrolled. 

The city parks department relocated the diamond towards Earle Street last year, and added shrubbery for privacy. 

The city supports T-ball by erected and tearing down the backstop for each year’s ball season, which runs from April through June. 

rholmen@vicnews.com