The new community facility at JJ Clancy Reserve includes an adjoining accessible play space between the new netball and tennis courts and the facility. ​

By Jordyn Grubisic

Demolition of Kilmore Football Netball Club’s social rooms will begin in October, following the development of the $4.66 million Integrated Community Facility project.

The new community facility includes community spaces suitable for large events, a commercial kitchen, kiosk, meeting room, accessible toilets, outdoor viewing area, player change rooms and amenities with accessible female-friendly facilities and adjoining play space.

Kilmore Football Netball Club provided a letter of support for the $3.4 million successful grant application for the new facility and was aware of the plan for the old social club to be demolished.

Stakeholders were also aware the old social rooms and several other obsolete buildings would be demolished.

JJ Clancy Reserve committee of management president Kristine Clement said the JJ Clancy community was thrilled about the new facility.

“We recently had a walkthrough and the facility looks fantastic,” she said.

“In alignment with our discussions with the senior football club, the demolition of the ageing social rooms was part of the agreement for the development of JJ Clancy Reserve and the new Integrated Community Facility.

“We have designated an area in the new Integrated Community Facility for user group memorabilia.

“This is especially exciting for groups like the Kilmore Junior Football Club, University of Third Age, and Little Athletics, which have never had dedicated facilities for such displays.”

The new community facility at Kilmore’s JJ Clancy Reserve includes community spaces suitable for large events and a commercial kitchen. ​

Mitchell Shire Council acting chief executive Mary Agostino said the development needed to consider the future.

“While it is sad to see some of that history go, these latest improvements will help meet contemporary needs and expectations and ensure a legacy for the next generation of people who call Kilmore home,” she said.

“Kilmore is growing fast, and it is important that we look to the future when planning sport, recreation and community use spaces.

“Unfortunately, there have been delays related to the significant issues being experienced in the broader construction industry with material supply shortage and cost escalations.

“Demolition of the social clubrooms is expected to begin in October, with materials being recycled in accordance with council’s sustainability policy.”

However, some believe the social rooms should not be demolished with Kilmore and District Residents and Ratepayers Association, KADRRA, penning to council to keep the old social rooms.

KADRRA planning committee chair Anne Rose said KADRRA hoped the social rooms remained and continued to be used.

“Residents and members of the Kilmore Football Club have informed us that the old social rooms could still be a valuable community building,” she said.

“They have told us that they do not want these rooms demolished. They are in reasonable repair and they have rooms and facilities that could provide accommodation for various community groups.

“Kilmore lacks a centre for drop-in youth activities. The council youth councillors may be able to start a project to find volunteers to lead a youth group based in the social rooms.

“We have been told that U3A had discussions with their members and believe that the use of this building could assist with some classes sand future growth.

“We hope that the social rooms at the Kilmore Clancy Reserve will continue to be utilised.”

The new player changerooms in the Integrated Community Facility include brand new shower facilities with dividers and a massage room. They also include new female-friendly facilities including changerooms for female umpires. ​

Currently, a draft masterplan is being used for the $7 million upgrades to JJ Clancy Reserve.

A previous masterplan for the reserve was developed by the JJ Clancy Reserve committee of management in 2010.

Prior to COVID, council developed a new masterplan that was agreed to by the committee – this draft was used for external funding opportunities arising between 2019 and 2022 and is being used to guide current works.