MEDIA RELEASE: South Wairarapa District Council MoU with Kuranui College opens door for community access to new gymnasium

23 June 2021

The South Wairarapa District Council (Council) and Kuranui College (College) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that formalises the $1 million contribution from the Council towards a replacement gymnasium for both the College and South Wairarapa residents. The Council’s Chief Executive Officer, Harry Wilson, and Kuranui College Board Chair, Belinda Cordwell, completed the formality at the College today.

The agreement has come about from a collaborative effort between the Council, the College and the Ministry of Education, which is providing the remaining funds required. The Council’s decision was largely in recognition of the many benefits for not just the students of Kuranui College but also the wider Wairarapa community. 

College Principal Simon Fuller was present at the signing.  He is delighted, ‘Our students will relish the use of brand-new facilities. At the College we encourage active participation in all sports, including indoor sports, which are particularly popular during winter. A huge thanks to our South Wairarapa District Council for helping make this a reality for us.’

The concept design developed by the Ministry of Education is based on similar facilities provided to schools and colleges across the country. It includes a full-sized netball court, facilities for other sports, changing rooms, storage, toilet and shower facilities, and a mezzanine viewing area.

Mayor Alex Beijen said ‘The aim of the public contribution is to allow the general public to access the facilities after school hours (between 5pm and 10pm), on weekends and during school holidays.  A brand-new facility should be popular with community groups, sports clubs and anyone looking for a large ‘state of the art’ venue. It should serve the entire Wairarapa community very well’. 

Hiring rates will differ for non-profit and commercial/sole traders, with non-profit groups being charged just a nominal fee based on running costs. All users must comply with Kuranui College policies including health and safety, alcohol on school property, and maintain the college’s smoking and vape free status at all times.

Concept drawings outline a modern sports facility, based on similar ones built and provided for community access, and it is expected that the low rate of venue hire provides significant incentive for community groups to take full advantage of this collaboration.

The Council’s long-term plan outlined the responsibility of Council to provide recreational spaces for our community to fostering social wellbeing.  Through this collaborative process the Council can maximise return on investment by ensuring these spaces are available for a broad spectrum of the community rather than sitting empty outside of school hours.

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