Eltham Sports Fields Reallocation

Eltham Sports Fields Reallocation

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Eltham Associated Football Club (AFC) has been given the green light to relocate from Taylor Park to use Taumata and Saunders Parks as its playing base for the 2014 season.

The recommendation, made on Monday at South Taranaki District Council’s (STDC) Policy Development Committee Meeting, means the Eltham Rugby Club, who have been historic users of Taumata Park wouldhave to shift to Soldiers Park.

South Taranaki Mayor, Ross Dunlop says it was a difficult decision.

“The fact is that soccer in Eltham has much higher playing numbers at all levels and has done for some time. The soccer club, plays 40-50 games a season in Eltham and with only one field simply don’t have enough room. However Eltham Rugby Club host only 2 senior teams (combined with Kaponga) and last year only played five games at Taumata Park have an oversupply of fields,” he says.

“I appreciate the historic connections Eltham Rugby Club have with Taumata Park but we have to decide on what is the most efficient and fair use of our facilities and do what’s best for the wider Eltham sports community. Eltham soccer needs more fields while the fields at Taumata Park are underutilised,” says Mayor Dunlop.

Councillors also agreedthat further investigation was needed into the potential development, funding, and ownership of a new ‘clubroom’ type facility at Taumata Park and whether lighting improvements needed to be made at Soldiers Park for night time rugby practices. The long term future of Taylor Park will also be investigated at a later date.

The decision was supported by the Eltham Community Board who originally put the plan to reallocate the fields to Council.

The Council’s Policy Development Committeerecommendation will be ratifiedat its ordinary meeting on 24 February.