The turf wicket of Macksville’s Thistle Park could become something of a tourist attraction if hopes for its upgrade are realised.
At their May 11 meeting Nambucca Shire councillors discussed the merits of the concept design that was before them.
Back in 2009 the council bought the park from the Department of Education following community concerns about its future if sold on the open market
Cr Susan Jenvey questioned why this much energy and money was to be put into cricket.
“Have the community’s future recreation needs been analysed? What about other sports – why cricket,” Cr Jenvey asked.
The General Manager, Michael Coulter, said an audit of open space had been done two years ago and had included community consultation.
“The Junior and Senior Cricket Clubs use the park all the time and take care of it themselves,” Mr Coulter said.
“Thistle Park has the makings of a great facility – it would only need modest expenditure and grant funding,” Mr Coulter said.
“The support for cricket I believe is as good as it is for any other sport in the shire.”
He added the purchase of new timing equipment for the Macksville Aquatic Centre had seen the facility secure additional carnivals, including regional ones, which was a bonus for the town and the shire.
Cr Brian Finlayson said historically the park was a polo ground.
“Once that stopped this became a very sorry part of town,” Cr Finlayson said.
“The Cricket Club took it over and made it attractive … add a white picket fence and I think we have a good facility with plenty of potential. I support this recommendation.”
The motion to put the plan on public display was passed unanimously.
Cr Rhonda Hoban noted that following the exhibition period it was likely many comments would be received.
“The plan will then likely be rearranged and there will be ample time for further discussion,” she said.
The concept plan will go on public display in about 10 days time.