Surf?s up at Red Rock
By CRAIG McTEAR
LEANE McLachlan couldn't wipe the smile from her face yesterday.
The Red Rock-Corindi Surf Club secretary and her colleagues were thrilled to witness the turning of the first sod for their long-awaited clubhouse at the Red Rock Caravan Park.
The members have been campaigning for the new facility since the club was established back in 1991.
All this time, they've had to use cramped and inadequate sheds in the caravan park, and they've had equipment scattered in storage from Coffs Harbour to Grafton.
"For me, it makes it all seem real. It was a very long wait to get an answer back on funding," Mrs McLachlan said.
"That was the biggest issue."
The new, two-storey clubhouse is earmarked for a July, 2008 completion, and it will cost almost $343,000 to build.
The NSW Department of Tourism, Sport and Recreation has allocated $233,574 for the project, with the rest coming from community fundraising, donations of materials, and the support of Coffs Harbour City Council.
"We're still asking for people to chip in," Leanne said.
The ground level will be ready for use by September, complete with a patrol room, a first aid room, a storage area and a dedicated Nippers' section.
The top deck will feature training rooms, an office, a kitchen, a radio room and a meeting room. The new building will also have toilet facilities, which have so far been sadly lacking.
"This clubhouse is something we've been aiming towards for a long time," club president Mark Aspinall said.
"It's great we can provide our members with the facilities they need and should have.
"This will make them even prouder of being lifesavers and proud of their new establishment.
"Importantly, it will also improve our response times to emergencies."
Red Rock is also earmarked for a surveillance tower under the Towers of Strength program.
n If you want to contribute funds to the new clubhouse, contact Leane McLachlan on 6649 1248.