Singleton hits the ground running in 2021 with triple investment for sport and recreation
Sports and Recreation Investment in Singleton on a high
Investment in sport and recreation in Singleton will more than triple in 2021 with a champion list of projects for sports facilities across the local government area, including a new surface for Howe Park, sport lighting upgrades and the continued roll out of irrigation systems for sportsfields.
More than $2.5 million is included in Singleton Council’s 2020/2021 capital works program for sports and recreation infrastructure that covers $450,000 for improvements to Singleton Gym & Swim, $60,000 for irrigation for Cook Park and $20,000 for turf renovations to go ahead in 2021.
The NSW Government’s recent announcement of Resources for Regions funding also kicked goals for local sport, with $500,000 for the new grandstand at Singleton Rugby Club, $250,000 for Howe Park turf renovations, $476,000 for sports lighting upgrades at Howe Park and Alroy Oval and $250,000 for a maintenance shed for Singleton Golf Club.
In addition, Council is working with local clubs on the future of organised sport and will undertake a $75,000 Community Sport Infrastructure Strategy to help sports clubs prepare strategic plans that will help set the vision for sport in Singleton.
Council also allocated $31,235 in dollar-for-dollar grants for sports clubs under Round 1 of the Singleton Council Sports Grant Program 2020/2021 at its December ordinary meeting, including:
Justin Fitzpatrick-Barr, Council’s Director Infrastructure and Planning said 2021 would be a massive year for sport and recreation, following on from $855,000 for capital projects in 2019/2020 that included repairs to the swimming pool at Singleton Gym & Swim, turf renovations at Howe Park and Civic Park, AFL light repairs, irrigation at Howe Park and Cook Park, and goal posts at Allan Bull oval.
“We’re working very closely with our sports clubs to deliver the highest standard of sports facilities for our residents now and into the future, to open up opportunities for new competitions and activities, as well as to help attract regional events to our area,” he said.
“The turf renovations and lighting upgrades at Howe Park are a particular example. This is the premier sportsground for football (soccer) and cricket in the LGA, and obviously following on from the fence and irrigation upgrade we wanted to reconstruct the field to have a full couch spec field in line with 90% of fields across Australia, as well as the right sort of camber to help with the drainage so it’s an all-purpose, all-year-round playable surface.
“The lighting will also allow something that we’ve never been able to have in Singleton before, which is night cricket. That opens up a lot of possibilities for mid-week cricket and T20 competitions, which may help to attract new players who couldn’t commit to weekend competitions.
“There’s also a lot of work happening at other sites, including the development of a masterplan for Alroy Oval. Concept sportsground layouts have gone to the football (soccer) and athletics clubs for feedback this month, and we’ll have the draft masterplans ready to go out on exhibition in April.
“We’ve also allocated $50,000 for a feasibility study for a mountain bike track in Singleton.”
A strategic focus for sport began late last year with two workshops to assist sports clubs to prepare strategic plans, including identifying their long-term vision and the facilities required to support it.
Mr Fitzpatrick-Barr said about 15 people representing nine different sports attended.
“Once the clubs have developed a strategic plan and identified their areas for improvement, that information should feed back through to the facilities that they require to deliver their objectives. Then the next step is a Community Sports Infrastructure Strategy that will include a gap analysis, basically identifying the gaps between what they need and what we have,” he said.
“The project will include a consultant to assist clubs develop strategic plans, an assessment of Council sporting assets and collaboration with the Singleton Sports Council to determine our priorities.
“We also work with the Sports Council to run a dollar-for-dollar grant program for member clubs for the purchase of equipment, infrastructure projects or to run events. A total of $105,885 will be available in Round 2, which will open on 26 February 2021 and close on 26 March 2021, with the successful applicants to be determined at the May ordinary Council meeting.
“Projects don’t have to be on Council-owned land, but must demonstrate a public benefit.
“Singleton Sports Council meets on the third Thursday of each month at 7pm and all sporting groups are welcome to come along and submit an application.”
For more information about Singleton Sports Council or the Singleton Sports Council Grants program, contact Council on 02 6578 7290 or visit www.singleton.nsw.gov.au/singletonsportscouncil
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