Big goal achieved for juniors

27 Oct 2018 Border Mail, Albury-Wodonga (General News) by Anthony Bunn YOUNG footballers will no longer have to change in a horse shed after $500,000 was pledged to ovals in Benalla yesterday. The Victorian government money will allow a pavilion to be built with male and female rooms for the Arundel Street grounds which neighbour the Gardens Oval. Labor Upper House MP Jaclyn Symes was joined by Benalla footballer Becky Webster, who was this week drafted by AFLW club Geelong, in announcing the funding. I was the only girl, coming through the under-14s there was all the boys and I would go around the corner (to change), Webster, 18, said as she looked at the shed filled with hay for horses. Benalla junior football league president Darren Skelton said 380 junior players from Auskickers to under-16s would benefit. He said his organisation would contribute $100,000 which has been amassed over 20 years. It is hoped the new change rooms will be open from the 2019-20 cricket season. The move means junior football matches will be able to be played at Arundel Street rather than Gardens Oval. Mr Skelton said it was the first in a planned three-stage upgrade with lights for the junior grounds and new cricket nets the other objectives. Contributions from Benalla Council and Cricket Victoria are being sought. Meanwhile, Ms Symes announced that the government would provide a $6 million loan to help Wangaratta Council complete its aquatic centre upgrade. It includes a new outdoor 50-metre pool, indoor hydrotherapy pool, splash area and toddlers pool.