Hockey in Orange has been given a major boost thanks to $267,000 worth of funding.
Monday saw the announcement that the Orange Hockey Centre's carpark would be getting a refurbishment, while new security lighting would also be installed. This came as welcome news to Orange Hockey Association secretary Ian McAlister.
"It's actually nice to have the support from council to get this work done," he said.
"What it means to us is the council recognises that we're a sporting body that does need the help and is worth supporting.
"Whilst we probably don't have a great number of turfs (two with the possibility of building a third), with good facilities we could attract other events to come to town.
"So having a good parking bay and good lighting all goes towards the future and becoming a hub for the area."
Work is due to commence soon and is expected to be completed by the start of the next hockey season.
NSW Nationals Upper House MP, Sam Farraway was on hand to deliver the funding news.
He believes projects like the renewal of the carpark will benefit athletes and the community for years to come.
"Sport provides many opportunities to the Orange region and by improving facilities like the carpark and the lighting, Orange will be able to continue to host local tournaments and also bring competition from across Australia to the region," he said.
"This is good for local hockey enthusiasts and good for local business."
Improvements to disability parking at the facility will also be included in the upgrade.
Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional NSW John Barlilaro added that sport plays an important role in everyday life, and hopes that this funding will allow hockey to thrive in Orange for years to come.
"I come from a regional community and normally the identity is either forged on a footy field, a netball court or in this case the hockey fields," he said.
"I thank Orange City Council for putting forward these strong projects on behalf of their community and look forward to seeing the benefits that it will deliver."
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