Friday, 19 August 2022

Sport pavilion makeover set to receive £169,000

PLANS to renovate the sports pavilion in Peppard look set to go ahead with the prospect of a grant for half the cost.

Officers at South Oxfordshire District Council  are recommending that it gives £169,124 towards the modernisation of the building in Stoke Row Road, which is expected to cost up to £340,000.

They described the project as “high priority”. 

The council granted planning permission in May.

The building, which is owned by Peppard Parish Council, will have a new roof, large changing rooms and a modern kitchen and the disabled access will be improved.

The building will also be made more energy efficient with new wall and roof insulation and double-
glazed windows and will be wired for solar panels to be installed in the future.

Peppard Stoke Row Cricket Club, which is the main user of the pavilion, will buy new cricket nets and an equipment shed.

The pavilion and field are also used by the Herns art group and for children’s yoga and fitness sessions. In order to fund the rest of the renovation, the parish council intends to apply for a £50,000 loan through the district council’s community loan scheme.

It will also ask for £23,000 from the sports pavilion and playing field charity whose trustees are all parish councillors.

Grant applications are also being made to Community First Oxfordshire, the Trust for Oxfordshire Environment, the War Memorial Trust, the Bernard Sunley Charitable Foundation, the Garfield Weston Foundation and the Chiltern Leader grants programme.

The cricket club hopes to raise £30,000. The parish council, which has already spent almost £10,000 on consultants for the project, hopes work can start in October and be finished by April next year in time or the 2019 cricket season.

The district council’s community grants panel will announce its decision on July 12.

Simon Crouch, a member of Peppard Parish Council who has been leading the project, attended a meeting of the panel and gave members copies of the History of Courage and Foresight, a book written by cricket club members James Hern and Gerry Bacon.

It traces the history of the building and playing field as well as looking at the lives of men and women from the village who served in the Second World War.

Councillor Crouch said: “The book went down extremely well with members of the committee who asked some searching questions.

“The officers awarded us the joint highest score of all the applicants, which we were very pleased about. It was a good meeting for us and I’m optimistic.

“The council has been aware for many years that the pavilion needs to be refurbished and it’s satisfying to finally see it come to fruition. 

“A lot of people has put a lot of time and effort into the project.

“The cricket club and other users of the pavilion have been so supportive and so have the residents, who have pledged money. 

“We are keeping our fingers crossed that it will all fall into place — it’s looking very positive.”

At the same time, Sonning Common Parish Council is set to receive £18,629 towards resurfacing work the children’s playground in Lea Road.

This would cover half the cost with the rest coming from the parish council or other successful applications. The work is needed after a safety inspector raised concerns about the existing rubber surface. 

The new surface would last up to 10 years and would be easier to maintain and clean as well as being more suitable for wheelchair users and pushchairs.

Meanwhile, the Baskerville Road playground in the village is to be resurfaced next week thanks to a grant of £21,771 from the Tarmac Landfill Communities Fund.

The area will be closed for eight days from Monday while the work is carried out by a contractor, Star Rubber Environmental.

The parish council hopes to also resurface the play area at the Churchill Crescent playground.

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