Major revamp planned for village recreation ground and pavilion

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Rec pavilion
The pavilion at Boldre recreation ground

A MAJOR revamp is being planned for Boldre pavilion and recreation ground after the demise of the local football team.

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The parish council is drawing up changes to the building and field off Pilley Street to make better community use of the facility. It used to be home of the Boldre Royals before the club disbanded last year.

Cllr Patrick Kempe, chair of the amenities group, told the A&T there was no budget yet for ideas which ranged from indoor improvements to new outdoor equipment on the five-acre area.

A small kitchen, office, exhibition area, storage space, and a veranda are being considered, as well as a chess board and an adult gym outside.

Cllr Kempe hoped that a first draft plan could be revealed by the end of the year for feedback from villagers.

He said: “We’re still throwing ideas about and it will be a long, slow process, I’m sure. In the end, it will have to be a useful building for the community.

“We have been thinking about the possibility of changing the rooms inside the pavilion. There’s a possibility that we move it – or do we keep it where it is?

“The sort of facility that we could offer within the pavilion would be an activity room where we could have small sports events, from things like pilates upwards.”

However, Cllr Kempe stressed that any changes would be aimed at hosting activities that would not compete with the Boldre War Memorial Hall next door.

The village hosts Hill House and Southlands School, which teach children on the autistic spectrum, and which Cllr Kempe was keen to make the new facilities available to.

He added: “We would like to be able to offer facilities to the residential homes in the parish. We have two young people’s groups who I am sure would benefit, and I would be interested to see how much use it would be for people in wheelchairs.”

The parish council is in early talks with planning officers at the national park authority about what changes might be possible. A business plan will be drawn up before anything is decided.

Cllr Kempe said: “We aim this year to send everyone a leaflet asking for their ideas and hopefully we will get something back from that. It’s a case of speaking to people in the village, in the pub and the shop and see what they want.

“It wants to be used by people of all ages and abilities.”

Suggestions can be made to parish clerk Peter Lock by calling 07751 497597 or visiting the parish council website boldre.org.uk.

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