Arnos Vale # 2 has required much work in the aftermath of its use for overlay during the CWC2007’s short sojourn in St Vincent and the Grenadines. For all intents and purposes the grass there has almost returned to its former self. The old grasses have resurfaced and so we are back to basics, after all of the heady expenses.
The NSC has not yet made it known to the national sports fraternity just what it intends to do with the rest of the grassed areas of the Arnos Vale Sports Complex. The area adjacent to the cricket nets just could be used by the existing sporting disciplines that access the Complex for an array of activities related to their respective sports. There have been rumours about its possible use but there has as yet been no definitive statement coming from the Council.
There is a commitment from the National Olympic Committee to engage in the beautification of the Arnos Vale Sports Complex under its Sport and the Environment programme. This should add to the already attractive appeal that this arena has for all and sundry.
Stubbs – the beach
The users of the Stubbs playing field have virtually renamed it, the beach. This results from the amount of sand that is always in evidence.
The Stubbs arena can perhaps now best serve those desirous of engaging in pre season work or those who have intentions of introducing horse racing on sand.
One wonders why any attempt was made to change this facility from the type of surface it had originally. The work undertaken on the wicket is separate and distinct. The LOC can be commended for the work done on all of the wickets since in most cases they were duly expanded to facilitate several strips and hopefully of a consistently better quality.
It is still very difficult to evaluate just what has taken place at the Sion Hill playing field. Someone in his/her brilliance almost unilaterally determined that there was good reason to change the direction of the football field on this expansive arena. Mistake!
The new orientation of the football arena now ensures that one side will always be exposed to the direct sunlight and be severely disadvantaged on afternoon games played there.
The lower end of the Sion Hill playing field is little different from its Stubbs counterpart and seems better suited to beach workouts for athletes in their pre-season training.
Grammar School playing field
The Grammar School playing field remains the most utilised grassed surface in the Kingstown area. One is not at all certain about the intention of the NSC in respect of the future of this particular facility.
There needs to be a concerted effort aimed at establishing a Committee that includes all stakeholders in respect of the management and scheduling of activities on this facility. The existing modus in respect of its administration is not in the best interest of the stakeholders.
Other playing fields
We have heard much about the proposed new playing field at Cumberland. This seems more political gimmickry than anything else. This may well be the reason why it has come to a virtual standstill over the years since the initial clearing and grading.
Too many facilities are administered from Arnos Vale and more attention needs to be paid to the establishment of Ma
nagement Committees that are at once non-political and non-partisan in composition and operational modus.
The NSC may well be doing its best at present but this is far from adequate. Perhaps it has to do with scarce resources but if that is the case then the organisation must be able to take the national sports associations into its confidence in this regard.
There seems to be an absence of strategic planning to say nothing of strategic management in respect of the identification of needed facilities and the location, construction and operational management of sporting facilities in this country.
The sport-loving public continues to demand higher level performances from our athletes but seem to have little interest in understanding and appreciating the often horrific conditions under which they have to train and compete before going abroad to confront their counterparts in their respective sporting disciplines.
Indeed, many of the national sports associations and their coaches and athletes may well be worthy of commendation as national heroes.