Stand up and be our champions
Bruce Magan, a Matamata businessman, has gifted more than $750,000 to the Matamata community to build a multipurpose stadium, similar to that of Morrinsville and Te Aroha. Matamata Futures Trust, on behalf of the Matamata community, is supporting him to champion the project and bring it to reality.
For 10 years the trust has been unable to find a suitable location or attain the required support so we are able to put in a formal application to the council for funding.
Several months ago the trust commissioned an independent strategic assessment to ascertain the need for a multi-purpose stadium in Matamata.
The report was professionally completed by the Giblin Group. The report concluded that there was overwhelming support in the community for the project. The people interviewed saw that the stadium would meet the future needs of the Matamata community and that it would serve as a much-needed community hub.
With the report in hand we met with our mayor, and Sport Waikato, Matamata College and Matamata Football Club representatives.
The council expressed disappointment the report did not include an assessment of Headon Stadium.
The trust did not include an assessment of Headon as it is plain to everyone that it is old and tired and no longer meets the demands of the community. The trust also consider a location close to the CBD better serves the interest of the business community.
Despite this, and the work undertaken by the trust, the council seems insistent on spending $50,000 for a feasibility study on a renewal/upgrade of Headon, and capital ($2m) in the 2019/20 budget to meet the outcomes of that study.
Common sense dictates that this money would be better used alongside Bruce Magan’s donation to build a brand new facility for Matamata, like those enjoyed by the people of Tokoroa, Te Aroha and Morrinsville. With the council support and Bruce Magan’s donation, Matamata would have almost $3m to start the project.
Te Aroha and Morrinsville have been through similar challenges in the fundraising and successful construction of their stadiums. It is clear, however, that neither would have been successful without the commitment and dedication of their ward councillors.
Matamata is the largest community in our district, we have $750,000 in the bank to kickstart the project.
The money will be lost if we are unable to get the project off the ground in the next year.
Our challenge to the newly elected Matamata Ward councillors is for them to commit to this project on behalf of the community. We would like one of you to take the role as council champion and Matamata Futures will welcome you into our working group.
Headon Stadium at Pohlen Park, Matamata.