New goal for Swanage and Herston Football club redevelopment

Swanage and Herston Football Club’s goal of redevelopment and new sports centre takes a step closer

The first steps towards the goal of a brand new sports and leisure centre for Swanage are underway. On the 16th and 17th October, people were invited to express their views on the plans to redevelop the Swanage and Herston football club ground at Days Park.

The current club house and sports hall are in need of replacement with the fabric of the buildings beyond repair. The plan is to knock down the old buildings and replace them with a new clubhouse, sports hall, gym, cafe, soft play area and office suite. There’s also a proposal for the main sports hall to be multipurpose and suitable for conferences and concerts.

In addition, the current grass football pitch that regularly gets waterlogged will be replaced with an all weather 3G artificial pitch, along with new spectator seating.

“There’s a huge influx of holiday makers into Swanage every year and when it rains there’s nowhere to go…if you can’t go to the beach, then where do you go?…We describe it as a wet weather facility for holiday makers, as well as principally for locals.”

Chair of the Swanage and Purbeck Development Trust, Bob Foster

The consultation is aimed at gathering the views of lots of different people to ensure that the eventual outcome is what the residents of Swanage will welcome. This supports the planning process and will help to gather momentum for the project.

Once a clear idea of the proposal is firmed up, then the next stage will be to get the funding in place. The money is likely to come from a variety of sources including sports bodies who are keen to encourage people of all ages in Swanage to become more active.

“Big vision is that we want to progress further up the leagues. Many years ago, Swanage were playing a lot higher standard of football, and we want to bring those days back to Days Park. Have lots of youth teams coming through and juniors…Any new facility that opens up, people are obviously interested and keen…They want to come and have a look and then hopefully they will join the teams that are up here. That’s what we want – that’s the vision.”

Chairperson of Swanage and Herston Football Club, Mark Watson

What is a 3G sports pitch?

A 3G sports pitch is an artificial surface that will not get waterlogged or deteriorate in wet weather. The 3G stands for third generation and is a synthetic surface consisting of three elements; synthetic turf, sand infill and rubber infill.

These surfaces are typically between 35 mm and 65 mm in pile height and are suitable for football, rugby union, and rugby league. This combination of materials is sometimes installed with a shock absorbent pad to meet certain performance and testing criteria of various sports bodies. The surface usually has a lifespan of about 10 years.

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