A much-needed sports facility in Romsey is now closer to opening after ownership was transferred to Test Valley Borough Council.

Over the past two years, TVBC has been working with the developer, Barratt David Wilson Homes, to ensure that Ganger Farm Sports Park is fit for purpose and ready to welcome sports clubs and the wider community.

The pavilion, which was initially expected to open in 2020, was meant to provide high-quality spacious new facilities for the town as part of permission for a 275-home development on the estate.

However, the council previously spoke of continued ‘snagging’ issues which had caused significant delays and insisted it was not prepared to adopt the building until developers had met all the requirements set out in council policy and regulations.

READ MORE: Romsey residents angry at delays to Ganger Farm sports pavilion

Residents and sports clubs had also voiced their upset at the set backs, which developers formerly apologised for. Company bosses said the hold up was due to a design issue with the external fire escape staircase.

But civic chiefs have now taken ownership of Ganger Park pavilion, its pitches and wider landscaped areas. Now, TVBC is working towards opening its doors in early September, ready for the winter sports season.

The site includes adult and junior football pitches, rugby pitches and an Astro-turf. The pavilion houses changing rooms, bar facilities, studio space and balconies that overlook the pitches, and will be host to regular fixtures, training, weekly Parkruns and other clubs.

Community and leisure portfolio holder, councillor David Drew, said: “I’m really pleased that we’re now in control of the building and can push on towards getting things up and running. It’s a high-quality facility that I’m certain Romsey will make the most of, so I’m grateful for the work our leisure team and legal services have put in to make it so. More positive news about opening dates will follow in the next couple of weeks.

“Many will be aware of the delays in the building and its sign-off, but now we want to make up for that lost time and get clubs and residents using this fantastic facility as quickly as possible.”

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