A Craigneuk councillor has thrown her weight behind calls to stop proposed changes to athletics provision at Ravenscraig in their tracks.
Agnes Magowan says she has received numerous calls, emails and visits from concerned users and parents who are lobbying against proposals to “downgrade” the athletics area by taking away the long jump and throwing areas.
Track lanes are also proposed to be reduced in to three lanes that are 40 metres long.
“Young people in Nor th Lanarkshire must have their choice of the full range of sports,” she said.
“Our young and up and coming athletes will have nowhere suitable to train in the winter months.
“We have a long history in North Lanarkshire of success in athletics and I feel it would be a retrograde step for athletics facilities to be downgraded especially in such a showcase facility as Ravenscraig.”
Councillor Magowan also feels any change would go against the council’s aims to promote healthy living and exercise from a young age.
She said: “One of the major agendas in North Lanarkshire is health and tackling obesity. Hundreds of young people of all ages attend the athletics clubs, even more since the Commonwealth Games and this year we are going to be hosting some of the events at the European Championships.
“Young people in Nor th Lanarkshire must be given the chance to take part fully in the sport of their choice using the best facilities possible. I am an advocate of all sports and some should not be developed to the detriment of another.
“There must be serious discussion with the athletics clubs and coaches and the other sports which train at Ravenscraig to ensure that the training needs of all sports are met.
“Permanent changes which curtail athletics training must not be considered!
Emma Walker, managing director of North Lanarkshire Leisure, said a full consultation currently taking place with all relevant stakeholders will determine the future distribution of space in the athletics hall.
She said: “The consultation will give athletics clubs and all other users of the space the opportunity to formally make their views known before any decisions are made.
“We will also consult with bodies including Scottish Athletics and sportscotland. The report from that consultation will be presented to the board to inform decisions about the space allocation at Ravenscraig.”
Blow the whistle Agnes Magowan says she’s had a number of complaints