Wandering cricket oval upgrade
A local government, Shire of Wandering, working in partnership with the local community, State government and a state sporting association to upgrade the community oval.
- The facility upgrade has supported the development of community sporting clubs, with the Wandering Cricket Club achieving its greatest club membership in years, and the Wandering Walking Club forming in 2011/12.
- New recreational activities and events are being established, increasing active participation and enhancing the sense of pride among the community.
- Allowance for cost escalation should have been included in the original application. This would have covered the shortfall in project completion cost.
Wandering is a small community located 120km south east of Perth. The Shire has recently experienced a growth in population with an influx of families with young children. From 2006 to 2011 the population increased by over 23% to 438.
With limited community sporting facilities, the cricket oval is the only one in the local government area, servicing the whole community including the cricket club, school and recreational users. Due to extensive use, lack of reticulation and water
supply and poor soil type, the facility was in dire need of an upgrade.
Upgrading the oval was to become stage one of a three stage plan by the Shire to develop the existing community centre into a multi-purpose, colocated recreational facility. The project, which was completed in late 2010, involved rejuvenating the
oval surface, installation of reticulation and improvements to fencing.
The Shire contacted various stakeholders who were willing to be involved in the project. These included:
- The Water Corporation who agreed to lease the existing town dams for a reduced rate which eliminated any water supply issues with watering the oval.The WACA curator who agreed to assist with preparation of the oval.
- Local tradespeople who offered to assist with preparation of the oval.
- Community groups and residents, including Wandering Cricket Club and Lions Club, offered labour and materials for the project.
The Shire’s initial application to CSRFF outlined the following objectives:
- Increase community participation in physical activity.
- Promote exercise among all socio-economic groups.
- Establish a family—friendly recreation area.
Even given the level of enthusiasm I had when taking on the project I have been overwhelmed by both the success of the project and levels of increased participation.
The Shire applied for a CSRFF Small Grant of $49,340. A grant was approved for the 2010/2011 financial year.
The project was due for completion in December 2010.
|Source ||Amount |
|Shire of Wandering||$53,306|
|Royalties for Regions||$30,000|
Project cost components
The above costs included $9,875 voluntary labour and $4,000 in donated materials.
The grant was acquitted in June 2011, six months later than the anticipated completion date.
The total project cost was $185,168 which was $37,146 over budget.
Voluntary labour was $24,245 which accounted for a large part of the cost overrun.
- Department of Sport and Recreation
- Shire of Wandering
- Royalties for Regions
- Water Corporation
- Local tradespersons
- Local community groups
- Sporting clubs
The rejuvenation of the oval surface involved the assistance of the Curator and Assistant Curator of the WACA, ensuring the standard of the surface was high and would be suited to local conditions. An agreement between the Shire and the Water Corporation
was also established, providing cost effective water and reducing the reliance on the usage of scheme water.
Functions and fixtures
Additional association cricket matches were fixtured during the recent season due to the upgraded facility. It is also attracting regional interest and the Shire is currently in discussions with several corporate businesses and cricket clubs to host
corporate cricket days and preseason matches.
The oval upgrade was the first of a potential three stage plan to develop a multi-purpose recreation facility within the community centre. The likely future development of added recreation facilities will support continued and growing use of the oval
and will likely reduce the maintenance and operating costs of community infrastructure.
Information acquired by the Shire has demonstrated that a broader community demographic is utilising the facility for sport and recreation pursuits, suggesting diverse community engagement. Following the project completion, youth and senior participation
has accounted for 50% of users, up from 20%, while female participation now accounts for 50% of overall users, an increase from 15%. The Wandering Cricket Club has also experienced an increase in Indigenous members.
The project has seen an increase in community volunteers and has led to the introduction of a number of new activities such as the Wandering Walking Club, interschool carnival, cricket clinic, movie nights and family day. This has helped to establish
a sense of pride amongst the community who are taking greater ownership in maintaining the facility.
In addition, the upgraded oval has seen an increase in regional use, attracting people from surrounding local government areas which is benefiting local businesses.
Access and opportunity
The Wandering cricket oval is a free, public facility, supporting the recreational pursuits of the entire community.
The inclusion of free barbecue facilities as well as ongoing free events, including movie nights and family fun days, has established a family—friendly environment, and seen an increase in passive use by families and children.
Improvements have also been made to surrounding access points and the barbecue area to support access and movement for people of all ages and abilities.
Participation and use
Due to the small population size of Wandering sporting club membership numbers often remain stagnant, however, the benefits of the upgraded facility became evident in the 2011/12 financial year. The Wandering Cricket Club experienced its greatest
level of participation in years with 28 members, including 10 new members, and the Wandering Walking Club was established with 15 active participants.
In addition to this, the facility has catered for a number of new activities and events that have increased participation amongst children. A junior cricket clinic attracted 40 participants over six weeks, while the Wandering Primary School held an
inter–association carnival for the first time, hosting in excess of 180 students from Wandering, Boddington, Williams and Darkan.