From the Newsroom

Member for Clarence Chris Gulaptis joined South Grafton Rebels players Makayla Metcalfe, Bree-Anna Metcalfe, South Grafton Rebels Vice President Andrew Jabour at McKittrick Park and Clarence Valley Council (CVC) Mayor Jim Simmons to announce over $180000 in funding to upgrade change rooms for players at the local sporting venue. Image: Emma Pritchard

Clarence Valley community projects secure over $1 million in funding

Emma Pritchard

More than $1 million in NSW Government grants has been announced for a number of sporting projects, locations and venues throughout the Clarence Valley.

Last week, Member for Clarence Chris Gulaptis was joined by outgoing Clarence Valley Council (CVC) Mayor Jim Simmons as they travelled between Yamba and South Grafton and met with local user groups and community members to formally make the announcements.

The money has been made available through the Stronger Country Communities Fund which is part of the Nationals in NSW Government’s $2 billion Regional Growth Fund.

Mr Gulaptis said CVC was successful with four applications for sports related projects.

McKittrick Park will receive $185,722 to upgrade and modernise the women’s change rooms, the Hawthorne Park equestrian facility will be allocated $240,718 for a grandstand and lighting upgrade to improve conditions for spectators, the JJ Lawrence Fields will receive $200,000 for new basketball courts and the Yamba Sports Complex will receive $152,011 for new change rooms and public toilets.

Mr Gulaptis also revealed the Glenreagh Recreation Reserve will receive $186,045 for new fencing and Grafton Foodcare will receive $77,763 for vital infrastructure including a 200m2 shed and driveway.

Mr Gulaptis said the funding allocations are terrific investments in the local community and he congratulated Mr Simmons on councils success to secure their applications. 

While acknowledging the local member, Mr Simmons said he was happy to sign off on the projects as one of his final duties as Mayor.

At McKittrick Park, South Grafton Rebels players Makayla Metcalfe and Bree-Anna Metcalfe said they are looking forward to using a new and updated change room during the footy season while South Grafton Rebels Vice President Andrew Jabour also welcomed the announcement, describing it as great for the future of the venue.

He said he also hoped the upgrades will help to attract more players to McKittrick Park.

At the Hawthorne Park equestrian facility, representatives from several groups who utilise the local space including the Grafton Riding Club, Grafton Polocrosse Club, Grafton Pony Club, Big River Campdraft and Big River Cutting Club thanked the Member for Clarence and CVC Mayor for the funding.

Secretary of the Big River Cutting Club and Vice President of the Hawthorne Park user groups Alan Dixon said the funding will be used to provide visitors and spectators with a better viewing area while allowing them to sit in comfort during local events.