NEWBRIDGE has been buoyed by the re-opening of its recreation reserve that was washed away in the January 2011 floods.
The new multi-purpose pavilion was unveiled yesterday, along with the restored football field and resurfaced netball and tennis courts.
With 28 months and $3 million in investment since floods swept through the region, it was a long-awaited opening for the community.
Minister for Sport Hugh Delahunty said the rebuilding work would not have been possible without the local community, who contributed about $175,000 worth of labour and materials.
He said the new multi-purpose pavilion, with space for up to 200 people, was a great asset for the town.
“Not only will it serve as the clubrooms for Newbridge’s football and netball teams, it will provide the town with a suitable venue for major events and offer improve amenities for campers on the banks of the Loddon River,” he said.
A strong crowd of football fans watching the match between Newbridge and Mitiamo were also on hand yesterday for the official re-opening.
Member for Northern Victoria Damian Drum said there had been a strong drive within the community to see the facilities rebuilt.
He said local residents deserved praise for their involvement.
“It’s been a long haul back,” he said.
“There was an awful lot of work done through the local community, through the sporting organisations to partner up with the government.
“The facility is absolutely top class.”
The $175,000 worth of labour and materials were provided by local residents on top of the $2.3 million from the state government and contributions from the Loddon Shire and Newbridge Recreation Reserve com-
mittee of management.
Among the pavilion’s features are a new function space, bar, change rooms, umpires room, office, medical room and public toilets.
Other works includes a new tennis clubhouse, upgraded power supply, new scoreboards and goalposts, and improved landscaping, fencing, and roadworks.