Football acad­emy to fight zon­ing clo­sure

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - NEWS - FA­TIMA SCHROEDER

HIS in­ten­tions were no­ble: cre­at­ing a fa­cil­ity which chil­dren, in­clud­ing those who live on the street, and as­pi­rant football play­ers, could use any time of the year.

Now Craig Hep­burn, co­founder of the African Broth­ers Football Acad­emy, has to de­fend him­self against crim­i­nal charges be­cause the op­er­a­tion of the fa­cil­ity is in con­tra­ven­tion of City of Cape Town zon­ing reg­u­la­tions.

The acad­emy has an 11-aside field, 5- a- side astro­turf pitches, change rooms and ac­cess to coach­ing on the sports grounds of Gar­dens Com­mer­cial High School.

In ad­di­tion to noise-re­lated com­plaints from some neigh­bours, the fa­cil­ity also be­came the sub­ject of lit­i­ga­tion in the Western Cape High Court when the city ap­plied for an in­ter­dict to pro­hibit it op­er­at­ing there.

The acad­emy got a small re­prieve last year when the city agreed to give it time to ap­ply for re­zon­ing.

In ad­di­tion, dur­ing this process the acad­emy also re­stricted af­ter-hours use of the pitches – two of them un­til 7pm and the third un­til 9pm – a move which Hep­burn said sig­nif­i­cantly re­duced the amount of in­come from so­cial and leisure games.

An­other ini­tia­tive the acad- emy looked at to re­duce the noise lev­els was the use of sound­proof boards.

But the re­prieve was short­lived be­cause, ear­lier this year, Hep­burn re­ceived a no­tice to cease op­er­at­ing and to ap­pear in court for the con­tra­ven­tion of zon­ing reg­u­la­tions.

The city says that the fa­cil­ity can’t be used for busi­ness pur­poses, as a place of in­struc­tion, or as a place of assem­bly.

Hep­burn ap­peared in the Cape Town Mag­is­trate’s Court on Wed­nes­day in con­nec­tion with the charges, and the case was post­poned to Au­gust 29 for fur­ther in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

The acad­emy has a pe­ti­tion on its web­site for sup­port­ers to help keep the fa­cil­ity open.

OCEAN VISTA: There seem to be a lot more ships in Si­mon’s Bay in the old pic­ture, taken around 1900, than there are th­ese days – ex­plained in part, per­haps, by the Boer War be­ing in progress then. In the fore­ground in both pic­tures are the old ter­races, once part of the Con­stan­tia Home­stead of 1749, a farm that pro­vided fresh pro­duce for Dutch East In­dia ships. More re­cently, veg­eta­bles were grown on the ter­races to serve the Royal Naval Hos­pi­tal’s staff and pa­tients. There has been talk re­cently of de­vel­op­ing the ter­races. The old pic­ture comes courtesy of the Si­mon’s Town His­tor­i­cal So­ci­ety, and the re­cent one was taken by Week­end Ar­gus pho­tog­ra­pher Leon Lestrade. Send in pic­tures of old Cape Town, with any date and back­ground in­for­ma­tion you have, to Box 56, Cape Town, 8000; to 122 St Ge­orge’s Mall, Cape Town, 8001; or to arg­pix@inl.co.za. Please mark them clearly for the Week­end Ar­gus Pic­ture Edi­tor – Then and Now. If you would like your pic­ture back, please in­clude your ad­dress.

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