In response to a letter from Luke Houlahan (CV Independent 3/2/21) I would like to correct some misconceptions.
Grafton Showground has been fortunate to receive funding to replace the outdated toilets and storerooms in our beautiful heritage “Barn” and we are excited to see these improvements to this important building. We are also in the process of restoring our c. 1925 Trade Pavilion (originally the Tea Rooms) plus have several other projects underway to improve and restore the Showground facilities. The entire Showground complex is heritage listed.
However, Luke is under the impression that the Showground is managed by Clarence Valley Council when in fact it is managed by a small band of volunteers under the banner of Clarence Pastoral & Agricultural Society Ltd which also runs the annual Grafton Show. Grafton Showground is in no way connected with Clarence Valley Council.
The Speedway that Luke has taken offence to is not only popular with its patrons, but the revenue it generates also contributes to the upkeep of the Showground. The fence that surrounds the main arena is a modern day, safety requirement which in no way prevents the use of the main arena for entertainment, equestrian and other events.
Grafton Showground is a multi-user facility with a number of groups being regular users of the facility, including the gem club, dog training club, show jumping group and line dancers as well as speedway. Other individuals and groups hire various buildings and fields for weddings, entertainment and a variety of other functions.
The Showground also has a monthly market. All of these users and functions contribute towards the significant cost of upkeep of the facility.
If Luke feels so strongly about the importance of our local Grafton Showground, he is welcome to join our small band of hard-working volunteers in managing and maintaining the Showground as an important facility for the benefit of the local community.
Carole Bryant, secretary