Hornsby Council Initiatives Win Big at NSW Cricket Awards

Hornsby Shire Council

Mark Taylor Oval Indoor Cricket centre

Hornsby Shire Council is delighted to announce that two local cricket initiatives designed to promote diversity in cricket have been recognised at the Cricket NSW 2024 Community Cricket Awards.

The Mark Taylor Oval Indoor Cricket Centre, delivered in partnership with the Northern District Cricket Club, was named Indoor Cricket Facility of the Year, while the Hornsby Ku-ring-gai & Hills District Cricket Association was also recognised in the Women and Girls Initiative category for its Girls' Cricket Competition.

Formally opened in February 2023, the Mark Taylor Oval indoor cricket centre in Waitara is the first of its kind in the region. It is used by men and women's cricket teams for all weather training and specialist coaching. It also supports use by all abilities programs, providing opportunities for people will disability to participate in sport.

The centre was the second stage of a major upgrade of the oval to improve sports and community facilities. In March 2019, the NSW Government announced a $9 million funding commitment for Council and the Northern District Cricket Club to partner in upgrading sporting facilities at Waitara Park which also includes the reconstruction of the oval playing surface and upgrades to the pavilion.

The Hornsby Ku-ring-gai & Hills District Girls' Cricket Competition provides opportunities for girls to play in fun, girls-only matches on Friday evenings or Saturday across the region, increasing participation and developing a love of the sport in girls.

"Hornsby Shire Council recognises the importance of community sport to its residents, contributing to both their psychical and mental wellbeing. We are passionate about providing opportunities for all members of the community to participate, including women and people with disability, and are upgrading facilities across the Shire to make this possible," said Hornsby Shire Mayor The Hon Philip Ruddock AO.

"Congratulations to the Northern District Cricket Club, our project partners in delivering the Mark Taylor Oval Indoor Cricket Centre. Their vision and dedication made this centre a reality.

"And congratulations also to Hornsby Ku-ring-gai and Hills District Cricket Association for their well-deserved award, recognising their work to provide increased opportunities for female participation in cricket."

Jeremy Hook, President of the Northern District Cricket Club talked about the indoor cricket centre's impact.

"Since opening its doors last year, we have welcomed hundreds of players of all ages and abilities the Indoor Cricket Centre. From high level women's cricket to Blowfly Cricket for people with disability, it has certainly made a substantial impact.

"We thank the NSW Government, Hornsby Shire Council and Cricket NSW for their support throughout the project and also pay tribute to the architect Peter Tout who is also a former Club player. I also thank the Club's Committee for leading the project and for the countless volunteer hours involved, and Club members their forbearance throughout the challenges of undertaking the project. This award is a great way to kick off our club's centenary celebrations," said Mr Hook.

Amanda Fraser, Girls Director of Hornsby Ku-ring-gai & Hills District Association said, "We are proud to provide a platform that encourages participation and ensures girls of any talent level feel welcomed and valued. This approach is instrumental in fostering a love for the game from a young age, allowing girls to have fun, make new friends, and develop their cricket skills in a supportive setting whatever their cricketing aspirations are".

Stage Three of the Mark Taylor Oval project focuses upon upgraded off-field supporting infrastructure to accommodate the needs of women, girls and people with disability by improving the changerooms, access and amenities in the pavilion and a Development Application is currently being assessed.

Following their success in this week's Cricket NSW awards, the Mark Taylor Oval Indoor Cricket Centre and Girls' Cricket Competition have now been nominated for a Cricket Australia Community Cricket Award to be announced in May.

Keep up to date with the progress of the Mark Taylor Oval project at Waitara Park Precinct.

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