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Pitch with a view available for city soccer

Pitch with a view available for city soccer players navy field 1 of 2

North Shore City's growing ranks of soccer players will soon have another pitch to use.

The Defence Force has made a playing field on its land at Takapuna Head available for public use and has handed it over to North Shore City Council to manage.

The chairperson of North Shore City's community services and parks committee, Margaret Miles, says the new field is a welcome addition to the city's existing sportsgrounds.

"Soccer is our city's most popular winter sport, and our council faces huge pressure keeping up with increasing demands for playing fields.

"We are delighted that the field has will be available to the public as it will help meet demand in that part of our city. It is not quite ready yet, but its great for our community and we're grateful," Councillor Miles says."

City parks operations manager Mike Weaver says the council has been given the field to manage for public use from February to September free of charge in return for weekly and seasonal maintenance. It is to be used by Devonport-based North Shore AFC for training and for club and federation matches.

Mr Weaver says it may be several weeks before the field can be used as renovation work is needed to bring it up to a suitable standard for soccer and its availability may be limited during wet weather this season.

"However with ongoing maintenance we feel we will be able to get more playing days out of it in the future."

The chairman of North Shore United, Mr Grant Hitchen, said his club welcomed the use of the field, particularly as there was a shortage of fields in the area.

"There are more young people playing soccer than ever before and this will take the load off other fields.

"The Navy has always been very helpful in the use of fields and as a past member of the Navy Soccer Club I appreciate their involvement.

One important condition set by the Defence Force in making the field available is that public access the field only through the Gillespie Place entrance and up through the Department of Conservation land. The Vauxhall Rd entrance is not to be used so the residents of private homes off this entrance are not disturbed. Council will erect signs directing the public to the field.

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