Port Macquarie-Hastings Hockey Association will soon be able to add the cherry on top of a cake that has taken almost five years to make.
The clubhouse at Hockey Place is due for completion in March next year with the men's over-60 Hockey NSW state titles from July 1-3, 2022 set to be the first high-profile event held at the refurbished facility.
Lobbying for funding commenced in 2017 before a federal funding agreement of $1.45 million was executed in April 2020.
Association president Simon Thresher said it had been a long time coming and it was pleasing to see progress made despite the COVID cloud that has lingered for the last 18 months.
"It's giving people hope that we haven't forgotten about it because they drive past every day and see a bit more happening," he said.
"They know the new clubhouse is the light at the end of the COVID tunnel so to speak and that keeps the momentum going."
Mr Thresher admitted they were six months behind schedule, but he only had to go back a few years to see what the facility used to look like.
"It was one old, crappy sand-based field that was rock hard and did everybody's knees in," he said.
"In the last five or six years it's been a phenomenal effort from the various committees that have been in charge to get us where we are."
When completed, the clubhouse will strengthen the sense of community amongst the hockey fraternity.
"The one thing we don't get across enough with our sport is that (the fields are) the hub for all the clubs in the region. It's not just one club's facility - all the clubs use it," Mr Thresher said.
"It's probably one of the premier sporting facilities in the region."
The association, however, hasn't given up hope of further redeveloping the site to enable themselves the opportunity to vie for open men's and women's state titles.
There are a lot of pieces to the puzzle which would require a third field being built in coming years, but the Hastings could throw their hat into the ring.
Should the council depot ever move, there are pie-in-the-sky thoughts of a third field being constructed next to the current north-south facing field as per the Wayne Richards Park masterplan.
"That's years and years and years away ... we haven't even planned for that ourselves," Mr Thresher said.
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