Goulburn is set to score goals this weekend when the city’s $7 million world-class hockey field opens.
The Goulburn Regional Hockey Centre officially opens this Saturday (26 March) with players from Goulburn and Canberra taking to the field for the first match on the new water-based field.
A water-based field is considered one of the best for the game, as it provides a smoother surface for players and reduces the risk of injury.
Goulburn District Hockey Association president Sharney Fleming said Goulburn had been a proud hockey town for many years and the new field was designed to revive that reputation.
“When our other field was damaged by birds, which was about six or seven years ago, we’d been playing on one field, so we’re hoping now with the new water-based field and getting new facilities around there, we can increase our numbers again in hockey,” she said.
“You lose numbers when you don’t have the right facility for people to play on and it caused a struggle for us with one turf to get all teams training and everything onto that one turf.”
The new hockey centre will receive new lighting, carpark, watering system, another club house and the existing clubhouse will be refurbished.
“We used to rent the carpark because this area belonged to the Workers Club so the council bought the land to give hockey a home because our lease was up this year and we really had nowhere to go,” Sharney said.
She said the Hockey Association wanted to bring the sport back to its heyday when it was a family favourite.
There are more than 10 hockey clubs in Goulburn, with 653 players registered to various teams.
Sharney said the Goulburn District Hockey Association contributed $200,000 of the $7 million funds towards this new project.
She said it was a combined effort between the Hockey Association, the Goulburn-Mulwaree Council and Member for Goulburn Wendy Tuckerman.
Opening celebrations will include a free sausage sizzle and games for the kids, including ‘come and try’ hockey activities.
This family-friendly event is free and gives the opportunity for kids and their families to learn more about their local hockey clubs, with professional coaches making appearances on the day and several hockey games for all to see.
For more details on the opening event visit the Goulburn Australia website.