THE Derwent Valley Council issued the following statement about the Derwent Valley PCYC and New Norfolk Sports Centre/Derwent Valley Sport and Recreation Centre earlier today. It is published here with minor editing. Community discussion on the surprise decision has continued to play out on social media during the day.
COUNCIL TAKES OVER MANAGEMENT OF NEW NORFOLK SPORTS CENTRE
Council is investing in improvements to the New Norfolk Sports Centre to ensure the facility is a clean and safe space (that) meets the needs of community sporting groups and participants. Council will take over the management of the New Norfolk Sports Centre from the end of November after the lease with the current manager of the site, Bridgewater PCYC, expired.
Council has been working with PCYC management and user groups of the facility since the start of the year to review the operational model for this important community asset. The Centre also serves as our region’s primary evacuation centre in times of emergency, and it is therefore vital that the facility is well maintained in preparation for this use.
“The New Norfolk Sports Centre has been at the heart of recreation in New Norfolk for decades. With council taking back the management of the site this will allow us to invest in much-needed maintenance and to ensure the centre provides a safe, clean community space for even more people to enjoy,” said mayor Michelle Dracoulis.
“I’d like to assure the community there are no plans to sell this important asset, now or in the future. The New Norfolk Sports Centre is a critical community asset and will remain available for sporting groups and other compatible recreational purposes,” Cr Dracoulis said.
“This decision demonstrates (the) council is committed to the future of the New Norfolk Sports Centre and for its continued role in being a safe space for the community to participate in organised sport, fitness, health and wellbeing programs and youth activities.”
The council is working with all existing sporting groups who use the facility to finalise agreements that will see them continue to use the Centre uninterrupted. We are also working with these groups to understand safety and maintenance concerns so these can be promptly addressed.
Regarding services for our young people, the council has made it a priority to ensure our young people feel safe and supported and as such is committed to a youth safe space. Council’s decision is in line with Brighton Council (which has) also recently reviewed (its) funding of Bridgewater PCYC to ensure youth services are better aligned with community need.
Derwent Valley Council is currently accepting expressions of interest from suitable partners for this service and have been in contact with over 20 organisations including PCYC to submit proposals. More information about this service will be shared once plans are finalised.
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