Funding has been secured to redevelop the aged and unsuitable Lucknow Recreation Reserve changerooms and netball court.
Federal Member for Gippsland Darren Chester made the $500,000 announcement this morning to fund stage one of the Lucknow Recreation Reserve upgrade, to be matched by East Gippsland Shire Council.
Mr Chester said new and improved changeroom facilities for players, trainers and officials were long overdue and congratulated East Gippsland Shire Council and the recreation reserve committee of management for their efforts to secure funding.
“I understand the netball courts have been deemed unsuitable by Netball Victoria officials which has created an urgent need to for court upgrades, together with sheltered areas for coaches, scorers and timekeepers,” Mr Chester said.
“Additionally, female changerooms, showers and toilet facilities for netballers and female footballers are required to cater for the increasing number of female participants.
“The local community has been working with all levels of government for many years and I’m pleased the Federal Government has been able to provide funding through the Community Sport Infrastructure Grant program to finally get these works underway.
“Improved change facilities will encourage more people to play sports in our community, promoting healthy active lifestyles.”
East Gippsland Shire Mayor Cr Natalie O’Connell said Council had allocated $500,000 from its 2019-20 budget and would manage the project.
“We welcome this funding which will assist us in completing stage one of a strategic approach to enhancing existing facilities and creating new opportunities at the Lucknow precinct,” Cr O’Connell said.
“Encouraging active communities and healthy residents is a key part of our strategic Council Plan, creating strong communities where East Gippsland residents can enjoy healthy lifestyles.”
Lucknow Football Netball Club Vice President Brian McNamara said the changeroom and netball court upgrades were a key step forward in the vision to make the reserve a family hub for sports and recreation in the east of Bairnsdale.
“Lucknow Recreation Reserve is the main sporting and recreation facility in the eastern side of Bairnsdale, and is home to Lucknow Football Netball Club, Lucknow Cricket Club, Lucknow Squash and Table Tennis Centre, and Bairnsdale and District Dog Obedience Club,” Mr McNamara said.
and it will become a community gathering place for events such as Relay for Life.
“Stage one will see changeroom upgrades for male and female players and umpire-specific changerooms and the development of a dedicated first aid room.
“We thank Darren Chester and the Federal Government for their support of this project, which will improve safety and enjoyment for all users.”
The $500,000 grant is being provided through round three of the Community Sport Infrastructure Grant program, which focuses on upgrading facilities that help build participation in physical activity, community partnerships and inclusiveness.