Wallis Lake is set to become the centre of inclusive sailing in the Barrington Coast.
Coomba Park’s new boatshed on Wallis Lake will become the regional hub of sailing for disabled people on the NSW north coast. The $400,000 building represents stage one of a major development for the community, constructed after more than 25 years of fundraising, government grants and thousands of hours of voluntary labour.
A new disability-friendly pontoon and jetty for access also recently opened. The $275,000 pontoon and jetty system provides disabled sailors safer access to Wallis Lake and is part of the $1.7 million North Coast Inclusive Aquatic Facility currently under construction at the site.
Sailability NSW will use the facility as their Northern NSW training hub and the upgrade has secured the hosting rights to the NSW HANSA Dinghy Titles in March 2020. The facility upgrade is already seeing increased usage across the community with the Wallis Spirit Dragons now calling Coomba Park home.
Stages two and three of the project will see the construction of a multi-use clubhouse, with a kitchen and toilets, car parking, water and power.
Coomba Aquatic Club president, Peter Felton said the club was gratified by support for the project which would enable sailing for disabled and able-bodied people on Wallis Lake and greater participation in weekly and occasional social events.
“The new facility will be used by local and regionally based groups, including adults and junior sailors and those learning to sail; dragon boat club members who have no facilities or boat storage; disabled sailors and carers; and community groups,” Mr Felton said.
Sailability NSW president, John Price said the facility would become the regional hub of sailing and training for disabled people and coaches on the north coast. “Completion of the project will allow regional, state and national disability sailing regattas in ideal conditions that ensure the safety, protection and access of competitors, carers and spectators.”
Sailability NSW has six clubs in northern NSW, including Sailability Great Lakes, and has more than 1783 members and 680 volunteer members in NSW.
(Story by Great Lakes Advocate, 16 Oct 2019)