Parish and Council reach agreement on sale of Tuffins Lane sporting fields
St Agnes’ Catholic Parish, owner of Tuffins Lane sporting fields since 2016, has reached agreement to sell the site to Port Macquarie-Hastings Council.
“In October, Council had agreed to approach the Parish to negotiate a possible sale of Tuffins Lane and, after a short period of negotiation, I am pleased to confirm that contracts were exchanged on Friday 9 December,” says St Agnes’ Catholic Parish Chief Executive Officer Adam Spencer.
The Parish purchased the land under the guidance of Parish Priest Fr Leo Donnelly as a commitment to the wellbeing of our community, particularly our young people.
“Much of the decision at the time was driven by the Parish answering the call from local sporting clubs and the community. We have seen ourselves as caretakers of this land until we could be assured that any potential purchaser would keep the land as a community asset, and we are confident that this is now the intent of the Council.”
“It is important not to lose sight of the level of affection that the local community has for the facility and the role that it plays in our social and economic landscape, and I thank the Council for recognising this and committing to preserve and upgrade the fields.”
Mr Spencer acknowledged the many people who played a role in mapping a way forward for the fields in 2016. He singled out the leaders of the local sporting community and other community leaders such as Janette Hyde President of the Greater Port Macquarie Tourism Association and State Member for Port Macquarie Leslie Williams who all played a role in ‘saving’ Tuffins Lane at the time.
“Of course, the members of our Parish Finance Council and Chairperson Carol Briscoe who fully supported Fr Donnelly’s decision to purchase the property should also be acknowledged,” he said.
“Since the purchase of the land there has been no doubt there were challenges regarding its upkeep, especially in terms of flood mitigation. Now that Council owns the land, I am sure its upkeep will become a high priority to maximise community usage and the ongoing attraction of sporting events such as the Junior and Senior State Touch Football Competitions,” Mr Spencer said.
Mr Spencer thanked the local sporting community for their appreciation of the Parish’s original purchase of Tuffins Lane.
“Everything we do is for the benefit of the community and local sporting clubs have been especially grateful for the Parish stepping in when it did,” he concluded.
St Agnes’ Catholic Parish CEO Adam Spencer with Fr Leo Donnelly in 2016 announcing the purchase Tuffins Lane.