Flying start for Girvan

The running track at Hamilton Park is to be re-laid.
The running track at Hamilton Park is to be re-laid.

VOLLEYBALL, tennis and athletics in Girvan are all set for a flying start from the blocks this summer, as an ‘ace’ refurbishment programme serves up a super set of sporting improvements.

The good news comes after the South West Scotland Community Justice Authority (SWSCJA) received a grant from the Scottish Government for almost £54,000 from the Cashback/Payback Sports fund.

The money (£53,833) will go towards a triple crown of sporting upgrades in the town – re-laying the running track at Girvan’s Hamilton Park, resurfacing and relining a tennis court at Victory Park and setting up a second beach volleyball court at the seafront, all to be undertaken through unpaid work by offenders.

Preparatory work for the volleyball court has already begun at the sea wall in the town, with work to the tennis court and track scheduled to begin from the first week in May.

All three facilities are scheduled for completion by autumn, bringing them up to competition standard.

South Carrick Community Leisure has already been in close contact with Girvan Athletics Club, Girvan Tennis Club and other volunteers, interested in regenerating sports facilities in the area to drive the exciting programme forward.

Harry Garland, South Ayrshire Council’s Executive Director for Children and Community said “This award is more welcome good news, especially at a time when Girvan and South Carrick is taking positive steps towards regeneration.

“The work at the running track will help rejuvenate interest in local athletics.

“Girvan has a well established pedigree in running and I’m sure the resurfacing of the track will encourage participation in other running events such as half-marathons, hurdling and cross-country races.

“Tennis has also become enormously popular, thanks stars like Andy Murray and I’m sure a competition standard court will have superb local appeal.

“I’m very pleased Girvan Tennis Club has already approached Tennis Scotland to see if a coaching programme for young people can be run on the new court in summer.

“The award also has very positive outcomes for the offenders who will be undertaking the upgrade works.

“They be making a direct contribution back to the local community and will learn valuable new skills, while developing practical work experience, all of which is relevant to their rehabilitation back into society.”

Last year, Girvan also hosted a pilot beach volleyball project, which proved so successful the Scottish Volleyball Association decided to include Girvan in the Scottish Tour for 2012.

Work on the beach wall has already begun and it is hoped the second court will be in place in time to host the national tour and to encourage people of all ages, especially families, to come and enjoy Girvan’s fabulous beach.

The project has been developed by Girvan Sports Hub through who aim to increase local participation in sport through schools, local clubs and associations, South Ayrshire Council and other sports development organisations.

Mr Garland concluded: “It’s an exciting for Girvan and South Carrick and I’m confident the award will go a long way towards getting residents, pupils and visitors to the area involved in athletics, tennis and volleyball – and maybe encourage them to try a wider range of different sports and outdoor activities already on offer in the area.”

Preparation work to Girvan’s beach wall is underway in anticipation of a second beach volleyball court being built – in time for the Scottish Volleyball Association’s national tour this summer.

Works to the running track at Hamilton Park and the tennis court in Victory Park are scheduled to begin in early May this year.