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Exclusive : First look at plans for Newark's Sports and Community Village

The site plan showing the position of pitches and other sports facilities.
The site plan showing the position of pitches and other sports facilities.

The first site plan has been drawn up for the YMCA’s proposed £8.5m sports village in Newark.

Nottinghamshire YMCA has released the plan for its Sports and Community Village exclusively to the Advertiser.

The plan was originally supposed to be available at the end of January.

The YMCA put the delay down to negotiations with sports governing bodies, which are still ongoing, and the need for architects to turn its vision into reality with a comprehensive plan for the site off Bowbridge Road.

The plans confirm a cycling track of approximately 800m, the discussions for which have involved British Cycling.

There is a six-lane full-size athletics track, with an eight-lane straight, which is endorsed by England Athletics and will allow field events to take place within the track.

The plans show an FA compliant football stadium and pitch that will have changing facilities and floodlights.

The YMCA has previously said the facilities could help propel Newark Town and RHP football clubs up the leagues.

All-weather five-a-side pitch

A full-size training pitch can also be used for junior matches across its width.

There is an all-weather five-a-side pitch and multi-use all-weather courts where tennis, basketball and netball can be played, as well as tennis courts.

There are climbing facilities, an archery range and a skatepark.

Sport scholarships will be offered by the YMCA, which is delivering the project in partnership with Newark and Sherwood District Council and Newark Town Council.

Nottinghamshire YMCA said revealing the site plan, and artist’s impressions of its new on-site building, confirmed its commitment to develop facilities and programmes for families, sports clubs and individuals from across the region.

It is beginning the process of negotiating fees for using the facilities with local sporting clubs and associations.

'Support has been phenomenal'

Mr Todd Cauthorn, the operations manager for children, young people and families at Nottinghamshire YMCA, said: “The support and encouragement we have received has been phenomenal.

“We have listened carefully to the requirements of local sports groups, stake holders and national governing bodies and will continue to consult with them as we finalise plans for the Sports and Community Village.”

At the heart of the development is a community building, which will be home to a large family-friendly café and function rooms.

It will provide space for children’s activities including dance, music-production and pottery, as well as accredited hospitality and catering training schemes.

The plans also incorporate an adult education programme and a nursery.

Hopes that work can start before end of year

Mr Craig Berens, the director of operations and programmes at Nottinghamshire YMCA, said: “We are excited to be sharing these ambitious plans for the Sports and Community Village, which will deliver a truly unique and multi-functional space.

“To ensure that, first and foremost, the facilities serve residents of Newark and Sherwood the vision for the village has been developed in conjunction with both local sports clubs and national governing bodies.”

The YMCA will continue its local consultation before submitting a formal planning application in the summer. Ithopes to start work on-site before the end of the year.

It has pledged £1.5m to match funds from charitable trusts and contributions.

It has said money generated by the facility will remain in the district.

The sports and community village will be next to the district council’s Newark Sports and Fitness Centre.

A spokesman for the Newark Sports Association (NSA) charity said: “A closed loop cycling track was a key component of the NSA plans for the sports hub and so the news that the YMCA are proposing to incorporate a cycle track within their plans for Elm Avenue is very good news indeed, provided, of course, it meets technical specifications and the needs of Newark Castle Cycling Club.

“This would apply to any sports development on the site.”

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