Better sports facilities
Minister of Sports says centres around island will be indentified
Many facilities across Barbados will soon be identified as centres for sporting excellence.
This is according to Minister of Sports, Culture and Youth, Stephen Lashley, who spoke this morning during the opening ceremony for the newly erected fencing at Dover playing field, Christ Church built by Sandals and officially handed over to the National Sports Council. The NSC is responsible for 71 pavilions and 105 playing fields across the island.
“One of the things that we are going to be doing shortly as well is to identify a number of our facilities across Barbados and to brand them as centres for sporting excellence. We want to do this to provide a wider range of initiatives and activities to develop various sports. We believe it must be done at the community level so for example if Dover were to be identified, our focus would be in cricket, football and road tennis and the idea of the sporting excellence facilities center would be based on that. It is a very key part of our sports strategy and will feed into the sports policy currently in draft,” Lashley said.
The minister said among the main areas of priority for sports development in Barbados was the continuing development and maintenance of facilities and the NSC was contemplating covering four hard courts across the island especially when sports such as road tennis were being played and the rain fell.
“One of the innovations being contemplated by the NSC is to cover at least four of our hard courts in different parts of Barbados and we want to do that because we recognize we want to protect the integrity of those sports that require cover particularly from rain and extreme sun.
“Among the main areas of priority for sports development in Barbados is the continuing development and maintenance of facilities where our athletes and indeed members of our various communities are nurtured and given an opportunity to maintain good health by becoming more active. And this is particularly important because we need to ensure that our country remains healthy and that facilities are available to our community participants,” Lashley explained.
According to the minister there were a number of things that could be done to enhance the sports profile of Barbados. He added Government was seeking to make sports a key industry in Barbados with several opportunities being made available.
“We are looking at developing sport as a key industry in Barbados and there are several opportunities available not only for the private sector but of course to private citizens who wish to be a part of one of those pillars of economic development that is sports as it continues to transform and diversify the economy of Barbados.”
The last fence was erected in 2007 for the International Cricket Council’s Cricket World Cup and hotel manager at Sandals Radu Mot said the project was a part of his company’s initiative to give back to the community.