Lakelands Reserve upgrades crucial to hockey’s future


Matt Bird, Lee Abbott, Andrew Robertson, Rob Avard and Peter Churack.            d451193
Matt Bird, Lee Abbott, Andrew Robertson, Rob Avard and Peter Churack.         d451193

NEW hockey facilities proposed for Perth’s south metropolitan region will be key to growing the sport in WA, says Hockey WA.

In March, plans were put forward for new clubrooms and playing facilities at Lakelands Reserve in South Lake, a synthetic pitch and supporting infrastructure at Sutherlands Reserve in Huntingdale and upgrades to Perth Hockey Stadium in Bentley.

Hockey WA, the City of Cockburn, the City of Gosnells, the Fremantle Hockey Club and Southern River Hockey Club lodged a joint National Stronger Regions Fund (NSRF) application to help finance the Hockey WA Facilities Project.

A decision on that is expected by the end of the month.

Hockey WA chief executive Peter Churack said fresh facilities were needed if it was to add to the 21,000 registered players in WA.

“WA is very fortunate to have some excellent hockey facilities already, which is very important to help us develop local teams, club competitions, state teams and national players,” he said.

“However, it is important that we continue to support the creation of more top-class facilities to enable a wide range of people from throughout WA to be able to play hockey.

“Hockey WA has committed within its strategic plan to deliver five new artificial pitches in place by 2020 and the location in Cockburn has been identified as a priority.”

The South Lake facility would cost about $6.5m, with Cockburn to pay about half and the NSRF to match the contribution.

Andrew Robertson – spokesman for the Fremantle Hockey Club, which is contributing $500,000 – said the facilities would be an upgrade on the club’s current premises.

“The club sees its relocation with contemporary first grade facilities as the path to retaining premier hockey club status and to extending its culture of participation, performance, pride, family, volunteering and inclusivity to the Cockburn community,” he said.

– Funding –

The City of Cockburn will seek financial assistance from the State Government’s Community Sporting and Recreation Facilities Fund (CSRRF) to help pay for new playing facilities at Lakelands Reserve, should the NSRF grant be unsuccessful.

In a report backed by councillors on Thursday, Cockburn’s recreation and community safety manager Rob Avard said elected members should seek support from the state as a fall back if the NSRF bid falls flat.

“Should Council decide not to support the CSRFF application and the NSRF application turns out to be unsuccessful, Council may be required to contribute or source approximately $6m in order for the project to proceed,” he said in the report.

The Fremantle Hockey Club (FHC) will contribute $500,000 to the project at Lakelands Reserve.

FHC spokesman Andrew Robertson said the club planned to reach that target by the end of 2017.

“The progressive targets in the plan are being achieved but there is no question that it is an enormous task for a family based club and we greatly appreciate all the support that the community and business can give us,” he said