Buderim's Alecz Day in the men’s grand final last year at the Sunshine Coast Hockey Association complex on Ballinger Rd. Photo Patrick Woods / Sunshine Coast Daily.
Buderim's Alecz Day in the men’s grand final last year at the Sunshine Coast Hockey Association complex on Ballinger Rd. Photo Patrick Woods / Sunshine Coast Daily.

Hockey hub to receive huge funding boost

A massive funding commitment is poised to not just upgrade vital facilities but boost one of the region's major sporting hubs for "decades to come".

In a massive coup for the Sunshine Coast Hockey Association, a "huge" cash injection of $450,000 is set to be made available as part of the COVID-19 Works for Queensland package to replace their main turf field later this year.

Sunshine Coast Hockey president Scott Brennan said the funding would go towards replacing not just the artificial turf carpet but the rubber compound underlay as well.

"The carpets usually get done every eight to 10 years but the underlay compound is 20 years old so it's probably lasted longer than it should've," he said.

Unlike other sports which play across the Coast, Brennan said the hockey association's Buderim complex was a "central hub" for the sport with funding to have far reaching benefits.

"It's massive (funding), hockey is only ever played at Ballinger Road, it's not played anywhere else within our region," he said.

"For the hockey community it's huge because our sport covers male to females from ages five through to 80-plus."

He said the association had always endeavoured on upgrading their turf field in the off-season this year and had even put money aside to cater for the project.

However, he said their savings could now be put to use elsewhere to prop up the game well into the future.

"It's (funding) set us up for decades to come really because it means now that we've got some cash reserves that we didn't expect to have," he said.

"We expected to pretty much be draining the whole cash reserve just to get the turf done which is vital.

"It's a huge thing for hockey in the region and hockey in the state too to be honest."

Local Government Minister Stirling Hinchliffe toured the Ballinger Road complex, and numerous other sporting facilities, on Wednesday with Sunshine Coast mayor Mark Jamieson to see what the COVID-19 funding would go towards.

A total of $7.18 million of funding will go towards 24 local projects, which the Sunshine Coast Regional and Noosa Shire Councils expect will create or support around 119 jobs.

The program is part of the Queensland Government's $6 billion economic recovery strategy Unite and Recover for Queensland Jobs.

Other projects for the regions' councils include:

  • Sunshine Coast Council: Upgrading sports facilities at Caloundra AFL and Little Athletics, Palmwoods and Yandina Cricket, Coolum Tennis, Ballinger Park, Maroochydore Multisport, Meridan Fields and Northshore Sports Complex
  • Noosa Council: Refurbishing the amenities at Pomona memorial School of Arts Hall, and improving conservation through fire trail maintenance and increased beach erosion protection

Projects are required to be completed by June 2021.