Report Reccommends New Athletics Facility For East Cambs

PUBLISHED: 08:42 16 July 2009 | UPDATED: 10:58 04 May 2010

AN influential report looking at the growing popularity of athletics in East Cambridgeshire has recommended that the district council consider building a brand new running track and athletics facility. The report, carried out over a six month period by

AN influential report looking at the growing popularity of athletics in East Cambridgeshire has recommended that the district council consider building a brand new running track and athletics facility.

The report, carried out over a six month period by consultants Strategic Leisure, found that interest and participation in athletics in the region had shot up since 2005 and recommended that the district council look into meeting that interest with a dedicated facility.

Following consultations with several key groups keen to get involved with the project, including the Ely Runners and UK Athletics, the report found that a six-lane track would be best suited to the area, along with facilities for high jump, javelin, discus, pole vault and a brand new club house.

Areas where the facility could be built were also considered with the Ely Outdoor Sports Association and The King's School, the two preferred sites.

The recommendations from the report were presented to councillors at a meeting of the Community Services Committee last week.

The recommendations were tempered however, by a cautionary suggestion that any new track would be heavily dependant on the availability of funding and the ability of the council to subsidise it in the current economic climate.

Outline figures calculated by the consultants put the cost of building at around £1 million with the cost of a yearly subsidy around £45'000.

Chairman of the Community Services Committee, Cllr Allyson Broadhurst, said:

"We commissioned a study earlier this year to look into whether we needed an athletics track in East Cambridgeshire. This considered the cost of building the track, it's upkeep and possible locations. While this work found there was enough provision in the county as a whole to meet our requirements, we are well aware of how quickly our population has grown and how many are keen to run jump and throw. For that reason we are keeping the matter under review and officers will report back in October.

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