3rd October 2018
Plans are in the works to develop a new AFL club and state of the art sporting field in the town of Bowen in the Whitsundays.
The development, worth between $1.5 and $2 million is set to enhance regional development teams and further support clubs in the Whitsundays.
The sporting field development is part of a $900 million plan with The Greater Rewards Group, who are in the process of constructing 1800 new facilities in partnership with the Australian Football League.
"We've been forming clubs in regional communities across Queensland that don't have AFL clubs, and Bowen has been a community on our radar for several years," said Infrastructure Strategy and AFL Relations Manager, Jake Anson.
"The Whitsundays are halfway between Cairns and Rockhampton, therefore it offers a central location to bring together our regional talent programs. Bowen could present a similar location for Townsville and Mackay. There is a whole host of options if we have a facility in Bowen," he said.
AFL has become increasingly popular in the Whitsundays, particularly among Townsville. Mackay and local Bowen schools. However, in the past, clubs have struggled to get up and running, due to lack of facilities and buy-in from surrounding centres.
"We have a number of Auskick programs running within Bowen schools and we have a well-developed program that our development staff use to engage Auskick participants and transition them into club football," Mr Anson said.
There development is predicted to be highly successful due to the Whitsundays favourable dry winter climate and its reputation as an exceptional Australian tourist destination.
Further, strong interest from coaches and recruiters in North Queensland provide many incentives for the AFL.
"We see Australian football as a game that can be a way of life for every Queensland community and our regional staff in Townsville and Mackay are very excited about the possibility to leave a legacy in Bowen," Mr Anson said.