By Lachlan Ellis
Two local sports clubs have asked their supporters to be patient, with pavilion works at their home grounds still ongoing.
The Darley and Ballan Football Netball Clubs are both waiting on works at their respective grounds to be completed, with both projects originally planned for completion in November 2022, before that date was pushed out to February/March 2023.
But both clubs have released statements in the past few weeks, sympathising with frustrated supporters.
In their joint statement, Darley President Mark Shelly and Darley Junior President Rohan Matthews said the newest planned completion date of 5 May would unfortunately not be able to be met for “a variety of reasons”.
“Thank you to everyone for your ongoing patience with the Darley Park Community & Sports Centre project. We acknowledge and understand the frustrations of players and their families who are eager to start using the space,” the club Presidents said.
“To the players, coaches, umpires, supporters and the volunteers who make the club what it is, we want you to know that we are continuing to advocate for the importance in getting this project completed quickly.
“As soon as a date is confirmed for completion, we will be sure to let you know immediately. We do hope that our new facilities will be ready for the first home game scheduled for Saturday 3 June 2023. In the meantime, keep showing up and putting in the work and be proud to be a Darley Devil.”
Ballan have had similar delays with their works at the Ballan Recreation Reserve, with the club saying in a statement that the change room pavilion in particular needs additional work.
“Ballan Football Netball Club committee are advised by Moorabool Shire Council that the completion of the change room pavilion is scheduled…by Round 4. We understand that completion of this stage of the redevelopment will allow us to play at our home ground and we are hopeful that we can welcome our members home in the coming weeks,” the club’s committee wrote.
“BFNC and Rec Reserve committees are doing all they can to seek information on the project, however, we are struggling to get the answers we need. Please be patient with us and remain positive…despite the many challenges we face in running our club without a home, we look forward to returning to the game we love this season and when this is over, we will be stronger than ever.”
Both clubs thanked their supporters and sponsors for sticking with them, during the difficult period of playing home games away in unusual circumstances.
Moorabool Shire Council CEO Derek Madden said Council was hoping to see the two pavilions completed within the next month or so.
“Work at Darley Park Pavilion is tracking well now after some external hold-ups, and we are on track to be finished the project and have the football and netball clubs use the facility in early June. The changeroom and public toilet facilities are receiving the finishing touches now, and are looking fantastic,” Mr Madden told the Moorabool News.
“Work is also continuing on the Ballan pavilion, and we expect a home game will be able to be played at the Ballan Rec Reserve in the next few weeks. When completed, this facility will also be an amazing asset for user groups and the community.”