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Mayor buries time capsule at new netball complex

Media release
October 20, 2005

Mayor buries time capsule at new netball complex

Auckland City mayor Dick Hubbard last night (Wednesday October 19) buried a time capsule at the site of Auckland Netball’s new facility at Ngahue Reserve in Morrin Rd, Mt Wellington.

Attending the event were the new MP for Tamaki Allan Peachey, the president of Netball New Zealand Fay Freeman and members of the Eastern Bays Community Board, including chair Brian Slater.

The time capsule contains a netball uniform signed by club and secondary school representatives, signed photographs of Auckland Netball year seven and eight representative teams, and a signed photograph of Netball Auckland Waitakere’s NPC representative netball team. Also included are letters from key supporters of Auckland Netball, construction photographs, a current newspaper, plus Auckland Netball’s annual report.

The capsule was buried near the main entrance of the new centre, currently under construction, where it will remain for 25 years.

Mr Hubbard said he was absolutely stunned at how much progress had been made on the centre since his first visit to the site five months ago.

“This new netball centre will take us from a sub-standard facility to one which is world class. It is going to give netball a huge boost,” he said.

“It is an excellent example of the partnership between Auckland City and Auckland Netball who have been working together since netball moved to Windmill Road in 1932.”

The council has contributed nearly $7 million of the $12.5 million cost of the complex with another $500,000 coming from the East and Bays Community Board. Other funders include the ASB Trusts and the Mt Wellington Charitable Trust.

Last night’s function saw two of Auckland Netball’s younger members ask questions of three life members, including 88-year old Joan Durbin, the organisation’s oldest member. They wanted to know how the game has changed over the years. Joan Durbin, Jean Rountree and Joyce Ellis regaled the audience with anecdotes from their many years in the sport but said they wouldn’t miss the complaints from Windmill Rd neighbours about noise and parking problems.

Auckland Netball is fast approaching its centenary and chair Allison Ferguson says, “We see the time capsule as a way to bridge the past and present with the future. Our organisation has a long history of involvement with the Auckland community and our new facility will enable us to both continue and enhance this.”

The new complex will have a “walkway of time” on which the footprints of previous and current Auckland Netball Silver Ferns have been imprinted.

Auckland Netball has outgrown its current centre in Windmill Rd, Mt Eden, its base since 1932. The current facilities are inadequate and seriously overstretched, requiring six different venues to run its games and programmes.

The complex is being built in two stages. Stage one incorporates 26 outdoor courts, three indoor courts, an administration pavilion and 460 car parks for Auckland Netball’s 7,500 members. It will be completed in time for the beginning of the new netball season.

Stage two will see the number of outdoor courts rise to 54 and the indoor courts to eight, together with a further 340 parking spaces. No timetable has yet been set for this.

Project director, Kay McIntyre says progress on the complex is on schedule thanks to the very dry winter and an excellent contractor, NZ Strong. Completion is likely in December.

She says the internal fit-out will be carried out early next year with Netball Auckland’s administration team planning to move into the complex in January.

Further work will continue over a period of some months, including construction of a wooden floor and nets on the indoor courts, once sufficient funds are raised. Over the next few years it is hoped to coat the outdoor courts with rubber in order to reduce player injuries. Elsewhere, rubber courts have proven less stressful on knees and ankles.

The new netball centre will enable Auckland Netball to host major regional and national tournaments, bringing significant economic benefits to the city.

The new complex will offer significant advantages over the current facilities. Competitions will be able to be held on one site in all weathers. An increased range of competitions including an indoor night league will be possible, while regional and national competitions can be held indoors at the same venue. In addition, both the indoor hall facility and the outdoor courts will be hired out.


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