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    ACE FACILITIES: Pictured at the opening of Harrow’s multi-purpose courts are, from left, Harrow Tennis Club’s Julia Flynn, West Wimmera Mayor Tim Meyer, Harrow and District Recreation Reserve Committee member Corey Shrive, Member for Western Victoria Jacinta Ermacora, Tennis Victoria representative Fiona Young, Rory Flynn and Troy Shrive of Harrow Tennis Club, Harrow Ballmoral Football Netball Club president Tereasa Hobbs, and Kate-Lyn Perkin, Tennis Victoria. Picture: PAUL CARRACHER
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    Harrow multipurpose courts opening.

West Wimmera communities celebrate projects

Member for Western Victoria Jacinta Ermacora officially opened three sport and recreational projects in the West Wimmera Shire yesterday.

New netball and tennis courts at Apsley were opened on Monday, followed by a redeveloped Edenhope Equine Facility, and new netball and tennis courts at Harrow were officially celebrated yesterday.

Ms Ermacora toured the new Apsley netball and tennis courts, made possible through $555,452 from the State Government’s 2021-22 Local Sports Infrastructure Fund.

The courts replaced the old non-compliant and unsafe courts and include two new netball courts and three tennis courts, complete with lighting.

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The Harrow courts were funded with a $738,945 investment from the State Government’s 2022 Local Sports Infrastructure Fund.

The new courts include two new netball and three tennis courts, plus lighting. They complement a state-of-the-art netball and tennis changeroom building, which was completed in 2020.

The new courts are a welcome addition to the Harrow Recreation Reserve and have helped Harrow-Balmoral Football Netball Club secure a Horsham District Football Netball League elimination final later this year.

Harrow Football Netball Club president Tereasa Hobbs said the courts at Harrow were vital for the future of netball in the town.

“We were at the point where we were possibly not going to play netball in Harrow anymore,” she said.

“The courts were unsafe, they held water, they were slippery, and they were just breaking apart. So to have new courts in Harrow means we can continue supporting both communities – Harrow and Balmoral.

“Ever since the merger we’ve been 50-50 where we play, and we want to maintain that. 

“New courts are allowing us to do that and continue to play netball at Harrow.”

The Edenhope Equine Facility, a project supported by a $250,000 grant from State Government’s 2022 Local Sports Infrastructure Fund, will be used by Edenhope Adult Riding Club and Apsley Pony Club.

The new building includes a kitchen, office, and first aid room, along with toilets and showers.

Apsley Pony Club president Amanda Shrive said the new facility was ‘a dream come true’ for the club.

“We had very substandard facilities. It was quite embarrassing to have instructors come,” she said.

“We had really no shelter from the cold and the rain. And with kids, it’s really difficult. So these have just given us so many opportunities to grow our club to host events, to have training days, and to do just so much more.

“It’s quite incredible. We’re rapt.”

Ms Shrive said the new facility would allow the club to grow its current membership of 25.

West Wimmera Mayor Tim Meyer said small communities needed sport and recreational facilities to keep them going.

“It’s really important to them. It’s what brings all the people here. It’s what helps them enjoy and have a good time,” he said

“These are the key facilities for our shire. We know how important sport is to the people in our shire, and without these sort of facilities, nothing happens.”

Cr Meyer said Apsley Pony Club and Edenhope Adult Riders hosted events that attracted people to the town.

“They had a hundred people at the event there last week. So that’s really good for the community and really good for the town,” he said.

“And it helps encourage the volunteers and keep them active as well. They know all their hard work is paying off. We know the important role they play and that’s why the shire has always been a big backer of our sporting clubs and we do have quite a few.

“We’re actually probably disproportionate to a lot of other shires in how many we actually do have. They might be struggling for numbers and they need that little bit of support and the shire has always been quite happy to provide that.”

The entire June 5, 2024 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!