Kilmore's JJ Clancy Reserve.

Communities will have access to improve sports facilities after projects across the Mitchell Shire received funding from the State Government’s Sport and Recreation Victoria.

A $1 million reconstruction of netball and tennis courts in Kilmore heads to the list of projects, which also includes lighting upgrades at Seymour’s Kings Park and Wallan Tennis Complex, new outdoor fitness equipment targeted at seniors and new goals for soccer and Australian rules in Broadford.

The major project at JJ Clancy Reserve, Kilmore, will include two netball courts and two dual purpose netball and tennis courts, with lighting, thanks to $500,000 from Sport and Recreation Victoria’s Female Friendly Facilities Fund and $500,000 from Mitchell Shire Council.

The funding for JJ Clancy comes after the announcement last month of $3.8 million for an intergrated community pavilion, new play space and the relocation of the little athletics field facilities.

Other significant improvements at the reserve in the past two years include the rebuilding of four synthetic grass tennis courts and new lighting over eight courts, and competition standard lighting for the oval.

A $250,000 grant from Sport and Recreation Victoria’s Community Sports Lighting Fund and $217,000 from counci will fund new lighting for Seymour’s Kings Park main oval and Wallan Tennis Complex.

This project will give Seymour clubs the opportunity to host night events, while the new lighting at Wallan is for two of the six courts that don’t currently have lights to meet the demand for night competition and training.

Mitchell’s older residents are also winners, with exercise parks featuring fitness equipment specifically designed for seniors to be installed at three locations – Chittick Park Seymour, the Elms Reserve Kilmore and Beveridge Recreation Reserve.

The fitness stations were made possible through $200,000 from Sport and Recreation Victoria’s Facilities for Active Seniors Fund and $100,000 from council.

Broadford Sports Precinct will receive new Australian Rules football goalposts and two sets of senior soccer goals thanks to $8000 from Sport and Recreation Victoria’s Scoreboards and Fixed Equipment Fund and $8000 from council contribution.

The precinct’s sports grounds, part of Broadford Secondary College, has received significant investment in recent years, particularly to improve opportunities for soccer and football, made possible by funding assistance from Sport and Recreation Victoria and the Department of Education and Training.

Mitchell Shire Mayor Rhonda Sanderson said council was committed to relentlessly advocating for funding to benefit the community and particularly to improving sport and physical opportunities for girls and women.

“It’s great to see investment for older residents, they can be excluded from more strenuous forms of exercise and need an alternative way to stay active,” she said.

“The provision of modern, safe and inclusive facilities will be crucial to drawing people back to sport following COVID and retaining and attracting new participants.

“The populations of Wallan (14,500), Beveridge (4500), Kilmore/Kilmore East (9500), Broadford (5200) and Seymour (6500) are increasing.

“Part of our role as council is to work with our government and community partners to help provide facilities and the opportunity to play sport and connect for our growing community.

“We have built great partnerships with our schools, and it’s great to see projects that can benefit students, sporting groups and the wider community.”

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