Community rallies to revamp pool building

Celebrating the win . . . Mossburn Primary school children celebrated the opening of their new indoor sporting facility which features an indoor cricket pitch. PHOTO HELEN MCFELIN

A derelict Mossburn swimming pool has been repurposed and given a new lease on life.
The swimming pool building at Mossburn Primary School, which was originally built in 1950, had sat empty and fell into disrepair after a new pool was built by the community in the early 2000s.
Mossburn Primary School board of trustees member Nick Hamilton said the old pool had been demolished and filled in when the new pool was built.
‘‘In 2017 we were at a crossroads as to what to do with the the building.
‘‘Ministry of Education had given a blanket no to rejuvenating the area.
‘‘So in 2017 we formed a committee and it is amazing what a little community can do — we punch above our weight,’’ he said.
The building has had a complete revamp that includes a new roof, wall lining, painting and a new artificial turf surface.
Mossburn Primary School board of trustees presiding member Denis Heenan said the project cost $170,000 and was funded by the community and grants which also enabled the school tennis courts to be resurfaced.
Getting the building up to speed had been a bureaucratic struggle, as the building sat on school grounds and had to meet Ministry of Education requirements, he said.
‘‘We don’t love bureaucracy. We had to repaint as we did not use paint to the Ministry’s requirement. The completed veranda out front was not compliant and we had to put netting down. It was a battle of bureaucracy,’’ he said.
Mossburn Primary School acting principal Ross Wilcocks said the 25m-plus of indoor surface would be a great asset to the school and community.
‘‘It is a brilliant repurposing,’’ he said.
The facility will be used for a number of sports, including indoor cricket.
Southland cricket development officer Jack Hilton said the facility was top class.
‘‘Dozens of children will use the facility — you could not ask for more,’’ he said.