Footy and netball are back bigger and better than ever in Baw Baw, thanks to the recent upgrade of the netball courts at Drouin Recreation and oval upgrade at Neerim South Recreation Reserve, the home of the Neerim-Neerim South Cats Football Netball Club, Neerim District Junior Football Club and Neerim District Cricket Club.

Member for Eastern Victoria Harriet Shing today joined members of the Drouin and District Netball Association and Drouin Hawks Netball Club to officially open the netball court upgrades at the popular venue, made possible by a $600,000 investment from the Victorian Government’s Community Sports Infrastructure Fund.

With seven clubs in the Drouin and District Netball Association sporting 95 teams from the under 9’s to seniors, netball in the district is more popular than ever.

The redevelopment has resolved previous layout, surface, safety and drainage issues to achieve compliance with Netball Victoria guidelines.

At Neerim South, the oval has had a major makeover with the ground re-shaped, a sand base added, sub-surface drainage installed, a pop-up irrigation system and the oval re-sown with rye grass.

Thanks to the upgrades, Neerim’s football netball club, junior football club and cricket club have a more reliable ground capable of handling weather extremes and greater numbers on the oval.

The oval upgrades at Neerim South were made possible thanks to $250,000 investment from the Victorian Government.

Together the facility upgrades are a boon for local netball, football and cricket providing clubs at both venues more opportunity to host more training, development programs, as well as local competition games.

The Victorian Government has invested more than $1.05 billion in community sport and recreation infrastructure since 2014.

Investments like these are also about creating jobs, stimulating local economies, and fast-tracking community recovery by improving the health, wellbeing, and social outcomes for Victorian communities.

It’s part of the Victorian Government’s strong commitment to sport and active recreation, gender equality and encouraging all Victorians to get out there and get active.

Ms Shing acknowledged project partner Baw Baw Shire Council for its commitment and investment to deliver the projects as well as the AFL for its investment in the Neerim South oval upgrades.

 Quotes attributable to Member for Eastern Victoria Harriet Shing:

“The Drouin and District Netball Association, the Neerim-Neerim South Cats, and the Neerim District Cricket Club are all fantastic clubs with deep roots in their communities – they deserve appropriate facilities they can be proud of.”

“These upgrades have made a massive difference to the quality and safety of both venues and will provide ongoing benefits to players and umpires for years to come.”

“Investments like these also encourage more people to get involved with their local netball and football clubs. That’s great for competition, great for local sports, and it’s a brilliant result for a community who’ve spent years advocating to secure this funding.”

“I’m sure local netball and football will embrace the new facilities, so they can welcome more players, train harder and win more flags.”