Winter sport has been granted a bright future in Wirrabara with a $113,148 Federal grant providing the local tennis and netball club an opportunity to upgrade and extend their courts.
The Wirrabara Sporting Reserve applied for the Federal Government’s Community Sport Infrastructure program in September last year and now they will work to upgrade both the tennis and netball courts in the Wirrabara Sporting Reserve, which will see both a resurface and extension.
The secretary of the Wirrabara Tennis Club Hayley Trott says the whole town is very excited about the grant because the netball association said that if the courts are not fixed, they will not play netball and football there anymore.
“When we got the notification, everyone was devastated in the town because it is one of the major fundraisers. It is really important for people to get together and have a space that they are proud of and feel really good to go to. Volunteering is a big thing in Wirrabara so it was quite scary when we got the notification.”
“When we got the phone call we were over the moon. We told the community and everyone was very supportive and excited.”
Federal Member for Grey, Rowan Ramsey received a very warm welcome when he announced the grant to the club and says the sense of community is incredibly strong in the town.
“The ability to be able to host netball, football, cricket and tennis locally is very important to levels of participation in sport in this community. Sport plays a really important role in rural and regional communities. It is important in developing social networks.
“Country towns like Wirrabara have also developed many of Australia’s elite athletes. If the town lost home games because the courts were not up to standard, it would have a detrimental impact economically and socially to the town,” Mr Ramsey said.
The courts will start construction in March and they will be fully completed by September, with the netball season to go ahead and be played on an asphalt surface and final touches to be completed afterwards. Funding has also been secured for an amenities block for the caravan park and sporting area.