The region’s netballers will have three upgraded courts to play the 2021 season on at Barellan thanks to Narrandera Shire Council kicking in $30,000.
The total project involves repairs to the two existing courts, upgrade of a third court, new acrylic surface to all courts, concrete edging and construction of shelter for players and officials, estimated to cost $161,000.
A portion of the savings achieved by Council in the construction of the Barellan Sportsground change rooms will be channelled into the netball courts.
Barellan United Football and Netball Club will contribute $16,000, along with an infrastructure grant of $115,000 to complement the Council contribution of $30,000.
The Club submitted a grant application in 2019 to the NSW Infrastructure Grants Program for the upgrade of the Barellan Netball Courts Stage 2 and was successful in receiving $115,000 to go towards the project.
Barellan United Football and Netball Club coach Jodie Landy said the Council owned netball courts were one of the most used sporting venues in the town.
“Over 4000 people annually use this ground. Of these, 1500 or 40 per cent are girls and women involved in netball on a local or regional basis,” Ms Landy said.
Stage one of the courts upgrade in 2012 consisted two new courts and four light poles.
“The two courts laid in 2012 are deteriorating and starting to lift,” Ms Landy said. “If we do not intervene quickly the two courts will be ruined and unsafe to use. “The existing third court is becoming dangerous for sporting activities and needs to be replaced.”
Ms Landy said the third court had been impacted by inadequate base materials and poor site drainage.
“Sport in small country towns, and in particular junior sports, are a vital component of the social fabric of our rural communities,” she said. “By not having the capacity to accommodate the training and match requirements of these sporting groups greatly limits their growth and participation levels.
“Barellan is a strong sporting community with excellent all-round sporting facilities and the upgrade of the third netball court is much desired by the community.”
Ms Landy said the upgrade would allow training, match play and night games for the Barellan and District Netball Association which covers a 150km radius. It will also enable the expansion of the Barellan Masters Games.
Cr Barbara Bryon queried why no quotes had been submitted to Council for the $30,000 fund request for court resurfacing. Council’s deputy general manager infrastructure Shane Wilson said Council had estimated the court resurfacing to cost $30,000.
“If it does become dearer than that, we will revisit the scope to see whether it may be just one court brought up to full standard,” Mr Wilson said. “If it is close, we will come back to council and have that discussion.”