FOLLOWING a commitment given to Newcastle Bowlers that Council would upgrade their facilities in the town, this matter was discussed at Monday evening’s Recreation and Community Services meeting.
At the request of SDLP Councillor Carmel O’Boyle, it was agreed that investigations would begin into the possibility of moving the bowling greens from Castle Park to Island’s Park.
Councillor O’Boyle said, “It is my hope and expectation that the coming year will see long awaited movement in the provision of a leisure centre in Newcastle. I believe that Newcastle councillors are moving towards an agreed position on this matter, and while I expect this to be made public fairly soon, in the meantime there are a few stages that need to be gone through.
“The first of these we have now set in train with an exploratory investigation into the feasibility of moving the bowling greens from Castle Park into Island’s Park. We are all aware that there may very well be flood plain issues associated with this idea, but at least an investigation will give us an answer one way or another. If we have to rule this idea out, we can then consider another possibility, which may be the route we go anyway, regardless of the outcome of the investigation into Island’s Park.
“The main message that I hope the people of Newcastle will receive is that there are plans afoot, and they will be fully apprised of these and consulted about them in due course. However, much to our shame, the bowlers in Newcastle have been neglected for too many years, but it is only now that we at last find ourselves in a position to address their needs. They have been very patient and we are grateful to them for the sacrifices they have made, especially since the installation of the NIW holding tank removed one of their bowling greens from them. We fully intend to keep our promise now to thank them for what they have done by providing top class bowling facilities of which they can at last be proud.”