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Margaret Whitlam Recreation Centre Officially Opens

By Dan Hutton on July 12, 2012 in News

Photo: Grant Brooks

Mayor John Wakefield, Federal Senator Matt Thistlethwaite and children of the late Margaret Whitlam joined in officially opening the Margaret Whitlam Recreation Centre at a special ceremony in early June.

The Margaret Whitlam Recreation Centre is a multi-purpose recreation facility at Waverley Park that includes an indoor sports court, clubroom, community room and kitchen, and it’s available to clubs and groups for sport and recreation activities, civic functions, meetings, training and conferences.

“In 2007, Council began making plans for a new pavilion, but we wanted more than just changing sheds and seats. It was decided it would serve not only the needs of local sporting clubs, but also meet the needs of our wider community,” Mayor Wakefield explained.

Built from concrete containing 20% recycled material, steel and glass, and partly buried within the bank at the edge of Waverley Oval, the centre incorporates passive design elements that will contribute to environmentally friendly operation year-round. The overall design for the landscaping seeks to ensure the building sits lightly in the park, giving unobstructed views to the ocean.

The centre has also given Waverley Council the opportunity to acknowledge and remember people who are special to the area.

“The grandstand, which has one of the best views in Sydney, is to be named the O’Sullivan Horsell Grandstand commemorating the contributions to cricket and the Waverley community by Phil O’Sullivan and Bob Horsell, who together have given over 100 years of service,” Mayor Wakefield said.

In explaining the naming of the centre after the late Margaret Whitlam AO, the Mayor added: “Margaret Whitlam was a Bondi girl and will always be known as a Bondi girl. In the 1990s she was recognised as a national living treasure. It is utterly fitting a centre built for the use and benefit of the whole community should be named after a person whose benevolence extended to all.”

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