Transformation of Phillip Hughes Oval

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It’s been a long time coming, but the Phillip Hughes Oval has now been transformed into a worthy tribute to its namesake.

The new maintenance shed is brimming with machinery, the gleaming pavilion will today be handed over to the club, and the freshly-erected aluminium white picket fence adds a certain touch of class to the Macksville establishment.

When the project was first envisioned many years ago, the idea was simply to build something to house the club’s machinery.

The ground maintenance equipment was stored in a shipping container before the upgrade

 The ground maintenance equipment was stored in a shipping container before the upgrade

The announcement of a $342,266 injection of funds last year meant the realisation of a grand master plan to create a cricket ground that would be the boast of the region, and help attract more juniors to the sport.

Mayor Hoban said the project not only had local support, but many fans from further afield who wished to see a fitting tribute to one of cricket’s greats.

“We wanted to spread the money as far as we could and give a bit of respect to the name. It’s been so good to get something like this done for the area,” Michael said.

Another of the organisers of the facility’s upgrade, Dane Luffman, said he’s “over the moon” about how it’s all come together.

He’s particularly rapt about the fence which he said really “finishes it off and turns it into a cricket field”.

“When I was a kid growing up I always wanted to play on a field with a picket fence.”

STRAIGHT AND TRUE: The new community-built fence is a thing of beauty

 STRAIGHT AND TRUE: The new community-built fence is a thing of beauty

The Thistle Park sign will come down soon to be replaced by a modern-looking etched metal sign complete with a picture of Phillip Hughes

 The Thistle Park sign will come down soon to be replaced by a modern-looking etched metal sign complete with a picture of Phillip Hughes

Phillip’s name also appears on the elegant white and grey pavilion which has been lovingly constructed by local cricketer Joe Costa over the past six months.

He said it’s been a privilege to be a part of the project and many of his contractors feel the same way.

“I wouldn’t have missed it for the world. I certainly wouldn’t have let an out-of-towner do it,” he said.

Joe Costa is proud to have been a part of the upgrade

 Joe Costa is proud to have been a part of the upgrade

Source, Images & More: https://www.nambuccaguardian.com.au/

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