Sign of the times

Stuart Patterson, Mark Reed, Andrew Broad, Alistair Ward at the announcement of a $20,000 grant to invest in a new scoreboard at the Swan Hill Recreation Reserve. Picture: CAITLIN McARTHUR

Stuart Patterson, Mark Reed, Andrew Broad, Alistair Ward at the announcement of a $20,000 grant to invest in a new scoreboard at the Swan Hill Recreation Reserve. Picture: CAITLIN McARTHUR

A NEW scoreboard will soon replace the temporary one which has stood at the Swan Hill Recreation Reserve for several years following an arson attack thanks to an influx of grant money.

Swan Hill Football Netball Club received the $20,000 grant under the Federal Government’s Stronger Communities Program.

Member for Mallee Andrew Broad announced the success of the application during his visit to Swan Hill on Friday.

The $20,000 will be combined with the insurance money claimed by the club following the “vandal attack” and put towards a new, state of the art scoreboard.

Even with the combined grant money and insurance payout, the club will still have to source more than $40,000 with the estimated cost of the project reaching $75,427.

Swan Hill Football Netball Club president Alistair Ward said the grant would help provide much needed upgrade to the infrastructure at the ground.

“The original scoreboard was destroyed in an arson attack. Some vandal set light to it, so that was destroyed. It was removed and in the meantime we had an old temporary one put there. Six or seven years later we’re still using it,” Mr Ward said.

The new scoreboard will be five metre by four metre LED video screen with a live video function.

The club also has some other, smaller grant applications in the works which they hope will come through and alleviate some of the financial pressure the club faces with the project.

Applications are with the Swan Hill Rural City Council and Holden Home Ground Advantage. Mr Ward said they expect to hear the outcome of those in the coming few weeks.

Equipment Solutions Plus owner Stuart Patterson said the company helps sporting clubs and not-for-profit groups access grants and funding for equipment and infrastructure.

“This is the first grant we’ve done for Swan Hill, it’s good to have some nice, early success for them,” Mr Patterson said.

While the scoreboard itself will be sourced from a supplier in Melbourne, Mr Patterson said all other work related to the project will be completed by local businesses.

The board is multi-use and can be repurposed for movie nights under the stars and local fundraising events, Mr Ward said.

“It will become an important revenue stream for us, it’s the only premier ground in the area, so it will be nice to have some premier type facilities on it,” SHFNC treasurer Mark Reed said.

The ground had their lights upgraded last year. Following the new scoreboard Mr Ward said the next focus will be on the club’s changerooms.

“It’s been a bit of a slow, drawn out process, but hopefully we’ve got it right,” he said.

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