THE Leongatha Football Netball Club will have new $300,000 outdoor netball facilities in time for the 2018 season.
The project has been funded with a $100,000 South Gippsland Shire Council contribution, $100,000 Victorian Government contribution from the Sport and Recreation Victoria’s Country Football Netball Program and a $100,000 contribution from the Leongatha Football Netball Club.
The council and the club joined forces to make a successful funding application which was approved last week and announced after training on Thursday night.
The Leongatha Court Development Project will construct a fully compliant match netball court as per the Netball Court Planning Guide and Netball Australia National Facilities Policy.
In addition, a second court will be included to provide training and warm-up facilities.
It will be located on the land between the show pavilion (chook sheds), the Woorayl Golf Clubrooms and the grandstand.
The main driver for the project is that currently the Leongatha Football Netball Club is the only club playing indoors within the Gippsland League which presents challenges for the club and the league.
South Gippsland Shire Mayor Ray Argento was pleased the project could now go ahead and wished to thank everyone involved.
“I would like to thank the Victorian Government for their contribution that will make Leongatha Court Development Project possible and congratulate the Leongatha Football Netball Club for their significant investment.
“The Leongatha Recreation Reserve is the premier municipal recreation precinct and home to the only club playing within a major league.
“The development of the new courts will ensure that the reserve is worthy of this status.
“Council acknowledges that the reserve is a premier recreation facility for the region, with works already underway to improve the parking and links within the reserve the Leongatha Court Development Project will only further enhance the reserve,” Cr Argento said.
The club’s netball president Renae Littlejohn said the announcement was two years in the making.
“It’s taken a lot of consultation. We missed out last year so we modified the plans and with the guidance of (council grants officer) Penni Ellicott and the support of the council we’ve managed to get it through.
“We’re grateful that there’s a pool of funds there that can support clubs like ours.”
Renae also thanked Judi Buhagiar from Netball Victoria for her support.
The club has already raised $31,000 for its share of the project with fundraising to continue throughout the season.
She said having the court closer to the footy ground, similar to the set up at Moe, will benefit spectators and members.
“It will unify the club.”
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