Century an 'ideal sports hub'

STU PIDDINGTON
Last updated 05:00 02/05/2012
Century Pool
JOHN BISSET/Fairfax NZ

UP FOR GRABS: Community and sports groups have been asked to signal their interest in the Century Pool site.

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The Century Pool complex would make the ideal building for a South Canterbury sports hub, according to a small local club.

Aorangi Croquet Club was one of the three sports organisations to register an interest three years ago and while no longer interested in the whole complex, they would love to see it turned into a multi-use venue.

Aorangi Croquet Club secretary Liz Ballantyne said their original expression of interest was in case someone was going to turn it into a sports centre with rooms available for hire.

"We would find a facility like that really useful," Mrs Ballantyne said.

She said many smaller clubs would be able to use the building if it was divided up.

The croquet club has already had plans drawn up to extend its clubrooms but as the building is owned by Timaru District Council those plans are on hold until a decision is made on Century Pool's future.

Community or sports groups interested in using the building once the pool closes have until May 31 to register with the council, giving details about their plans.

The two other interested parties previously, Aorangi GymSports and Celtic Sports Club, have stated they will again register an interest.

It is likely that any successful group would have to fund modifications to the complex as no capital funding has been allowed in the council's new long-term plan.

Aorangi GymSports had been working with the council but spokesman David Fridd said it remained "a work in progress".

Their idea was to use the facility, minus the pools, as the permanent base for gymnastics clubs and incorporate other movement sports such as martial arts.

Its original proposal for a "movement excellence centre" showed it would be used most days from 8am to 9pm, with around 6000 potential users.

Other users and activities including yoga, over-60s exercise groups and scouts or guides might also be included in the facility.

Celtic have also indicated it would used the facility for more than just rugby.

It appears that could also be extended to other sports if any renovation included meeting and board rooms that other sports groups could use.

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- The Timaru Herald

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