New R & J Fishwick Pavilion a boost for local sporting clubs

Published on Saturday, 17 February 2024 at 11:51:21 AM

The new $2.1 million R & J Fishwick Pavilion was officially opened today, marking a significant milestone for the Shire of Dardanup sporting community.

Shire of Dardanup President Cr Tyrrell Gardiner said the pavilion will serve as the new home for the Eaton Junior Football Club and the Eaton Cricket Club and was made possible through collaboration between all tiers of government and the West Australian Football Commission.

Cr Gardiner said funding support included $500,000 from the Federal Government’s Local Roads and Community Infrastructure Program, $700,000 from the State Government’s Community Sporting Recreation and Facilities Fund, $50,000 from the West Australian Football Commission, along with contributions from Council.

“It is with great honour that we name this pavilion after two beloved members of our community, Reg and Jocey Fishwick,” Cr Gardiner said.

“Their unwavering dedication to the Eaton Junior Football Club and the broader community since the 1950s, is truly commendable, and their legacy will forever be honoured.”

Cr Gardiner said the new pavilion was constructed primarily from pre-fabricated engineered timber by Timberbuilt Australia, which symbolised innovation and sustainability.

“Our Shire’s vision is to help create a vibrant, active and engaged community and it’s projects and facilities like these that enable us to achieve that vision for our community,” he said.

Brad Fishwick said the family was honoured the pavilion was named after his late father Reg and his mother Jocey, who attended the official opening.

Mr Fishwick said his parents were the ultimate community-minded powerhouse, actively involved in the Eaton community through sporting clubs, organisations and anything that involved making their home turf a better place.

“Dad was just involved in most things, the town was an extension of his own home and he and mum would help anyone,” Mr Fishwick said.

“Eaton was a lot smaller back in the day when Dad started getting involved in the community, he started the Eaton Progress Association and was president for a long time. He loved being involved in sport with the junior football and cricket clubs and he was part of the start-up of Eaton Fire brigade.

“Thanks to the Shire for this honour, and a special thanks to former Shire President Mick Bennett. Dad would have approved of this new building. As a qualified carpenter he loved Jarrah and it’s a nice tribute to the old man.”

The Honourable Nola Marino Member for Forrest said the project demonstrates how important the Coalition’s Local Roads and Community Infrastructure Grants Program was for the community.

“Congratulations to the Shire of Dardanup for prioritising this much-needed facility, that will be well used and enjoyed by the Eaton Cricket Club and the Eaton Junior Football Club,” Ms Marino said.

Jodie Hanns MLA, Member for Collie-Preston, said the pavilion recognises the contribution made by the Fishwick family to the Eaton sporting community over many decades.

“I am delighted to see the R & J Fishwick Pavilion become a reality for the Eaton Cricket Club and Eaton Junior Football Club, providing outstanding local sporting infrastructure for community use. It’s sure to build interest in these very active local sporting groups,” Mrs Hanns said.

“This project delivers on a commitment from the Cook Labor Government’s Community Sporting and Recreation Facilities Fund (CSRFF) in partnership with the Albanese Government and the Shire of Dardanup.”

West Australian Football Commission CEO, Michael Roberts said the Commission is committed to providing sufficient and suitable facilities that support the growth of the game now and into the future.

"It's our firm belief that every young athlete, regardless of gender, deserves access to facilities that meet their needs, whether they're playing in metropolitan or regional WA,” Mr Roberts said.

"Recognising the necessity for upgrades, particularly in providing suitable changerooms for boys and girls, we are confident that our investment will not only enhance existing facilities but also be a catalyst for growth of female football within the region.”

Eaton Cricket Club President Travis Johnson said the new pavilion will help the club attract and retain new members, which in turn helps the Eaton community as a whole.

“Thank you to all involved in making it happen. It’s been a long road but now the new pavilion is here the vibe around the club is awesome,” Mr Johnson said.

“We have evolved over the last 10 years into a real family focussed club and now we feel complete.”

Eaton Junior Football Club President Matt Old said with the continual growth of sport in the Shire, the new pavilion will help the club keep pace as it currently has over 500 participants.

“We have seen enormous growth in female footy and having these new facilities with enough change rooms to allow dedicated female use, is a game changer for us,” Mr Old said.

“The facility will allow us to provide a welcoming and inclusive environment for all players while significantly improving the amenities for our extended families, spectators and volunteers."

The new $2.1 million R & J Fishwick Pavilion was officially opened today.

Attendees at today's official opening of the new $2.1 million R & J Fishwick Pavilion opening.

Reg Fishwick with the Eaton Australian Junior Football Club players in the 1970s.

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