Darnum’s female friendly sports pavilion a game-changer

A project to build a female friendly sports pavilion at the Darnum Recreation Reserve is close to completion.

The project was jointly funded by Baw Baw Shire Council and a $500,000 grant from the Victorian Government’s Female Friendly Facilities Fund by Sport and Recreation Victoria, with a further $400,000 from Council’s 19/20 Capital Works program.

The works were undertaken by Warragul-based building company Farnham Built using local contractors and sub-contractors.

The new female friendly sports pavilion includes:

  • Change rooms, showers and meeting space for umpires
  • An administration office and kitchenette
  • Showers, toilets and hand basins
  • New gas hot water units
  • Internal seating
  • A first aid room with ambulance parking and access
  • Storage for tiered seating and equipment
  • 16.77kw solar inverter and 39 solar panels
  • An accessible toilet and baby change room
  • A new septic tank system

In addition to the new pavilion, upgrades are also underway to improve the existing public toilet facilities.

The new pavilion replaces the old outdated shed that had no separate facilities for female players and umpires along with other non-compliant accessibility barriers.

Council worked closely with the recreation clubs and user groups to design the pavilion to make sure it met the needs of the community and complied with sporting standards.

The finishing touches are currently taking place on the new facility, which is expected to open once COVID-19 restrictions have eased and sporting activities can resume safely.

As stated by Member for Eastern Victoria Harriet Shing MP

“The new facilities are a world away from the conditions that players, umpires and spectators were used to – these upgraded, comfortable and inclusive facilities are a huge win for everyone who worked so hard to get the project over the line, and the results will make a huge difference to women and girls who finally have the amenities they deserve.”

As stated by Deputy Mayor Cr Peter Kostos

“Thanks to the support of Sport and Recreation Victoria, we have been able to build a high-quality facility for our community to enjoy for years to come. Female friendly facilities are a priority for Council, ensuring that our communities have equal access to facilities and removing barriers to female participation in sport.”

As stated by East Ward Cr Michael Leaney

“We know that appropriate infrastructure plays a crucial part in increasing female participation in sport. This upgrade has allowed us to remove an outdated facility and build a much more inclusive space. Recreation facilities are especially important for our smaller communities so we’re continuing to prioritise upgrades across the Shire to make sure our facilities are accessible to all.”

As stated by East Ward Cr Darren Wallace

“It will be fantastic to see the pavilion in full swing once community sport can resume again. We’d especially like to acknowledge the time and commitment of the Project Reference Group who worked closely with Council to see the project through from design to completion.”

As stated by Nilma Darnum Netball Club Representative Hayley Heatley

“Our previous netball rooms (a shed) was not an ideal facility for our netballers and their opposition to gather pre and post-game with a lot of our netballers resorting to changing in their cars. Our new facilities are incredible and will assist us for season 2021 to attract new players and build on a strong club morale. Unfortunately, the current circumstances have not allowed for an opening that it deserves, however we look forward to the 2021 season and showcasing our wonderful new facilities to our opposition and enjoying our netball once again.”

Image: The female-friendly pavilion at the Darnum Recreation Reserve is nearing completion.

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