Members of the Crookwell AP&H Society have a lot to smile about.
At the beginning of the year MP Pru Goward had announced $275,000 for the Crookwell Showgrounds thanks to the Stronger Country Community Fund.
According to president Paul Anderson, this is the largest sum of money the society has received to date in the form of grants.
The grant application submitted last October listed needs for a new toilet block, the renewal of 12 power boxes, better water connection, the replacement of the administrative kiosk and the installation of child proof fencing around the woodchop arena and the rose garden.
Mr Anderson said the power boxes and safety switches, which are about 60 years old, including the water system and kiosk will be a priority when the first financial installment is received in June.
Two weeks ago the preliminary plans for the new showground kiosk, drafted by Canberra architecture firm Gener8design, was sent to Mr Anderson.
Built in 1952, he said the kiosk, which is now used for rotary swap meets and information points, would be considerably safer after the building is restored.
“Looking at the committee in five years time we will still be very well placed with the upgrade and ownership of the showgrounds,” he said.
“We treat is as belonging to the community, the showgrounds are there for the community. It is used by almost every services club.”
Twenty eight business in Crookwell supported the society’s submission for restoration, a number the president was extremely impressed with.
“Changes have been continual for the last 14 years. When I got there in 2005, 72 pine trees were deemed dangerous. We were able to get grants to have those taken out to render the grounds safe,” he said.
“Now it is where the team sorting yards are located, and it has been a tremendous success.”
Currently, there are 20-25 active members, and double the number of volunteers in the Crookwell AP&H Society.
He “sincerely thanked” Ms Goward and the Upper Lachlan Shire Council for their support.