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Fort falls short: Assistant Minister highlights need for new facilities

Fort falls short: Assistant Minister highlights need for new facilities

Friday 31 March 2023

Fort falls short: Assistant Minister highlights need for new facilities

Friday 31 March 2023


Fort Regent is past its useful life and should be replaced by new, fit-for-purpose facilities, the Assistant Minister with responsibility for sport has said.

Responding to a lobby group’s 'Keep Sport at the Fort' petition, Deputy Lucy Stephenson said the building was “beyond the end of its useful life from a sport perspective”.

The petition by Friends of Fort Regent described the facilities as “an essential part of the local community, playing a critical role in promoting health, wellness, and physical fitness among people of all ages and abilities”.

In her official response, published on the government's e-petitions site, Deputy Stephenson said different sports were being relocated to more modern, more accessible, facilities in the community to modernise provision and enable Fort Regent to be redeveloped.

“The delivery of new, modern, fit-for-the-future sports venues is the aim of the Inspiring Active Places strategy,” she said. “This plan has been widely shared with current Fort Regent tenants and discussed and negotiated over an extended period, and was also informed by consultation with sports clubs and associations and Islanders more generally.”

Moves were being “carefully timed”, she said, occurring only when new developments were open or temporary facilities were lined up.

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Pictured: Deputy Lucy Stephenson, Assistant Minister with responsibility for sport.

Deputy Stephenson added: “For many years, sports that decided to move to Fort Regent were ‘retro-fitted’ into locations and spaces which today would not meet modern standards required, specifically building standards and the requirements of national governing bodies in terms the levels of activity or intensity being undertaken.

“It is therefore right to be moving sport out of the Fort for the time being and to be making long overdue investment in sport to make improvements and provide new, fit-for-purpose facilities to meet the current and future demands of sporting Islanders.

“The Government recognises that modern, accessible sports facilities are a vital component in improving the health and wellbeing of Islanders – there may still be a place for sport at the Fort in the future.”

In conclusion, Deputy Stephenson said: “To maximise the potential of the historic fort structure major refurbishment works are required – this is best achieved once the building has been vacated, as it will then be a blank canvas for redevelopment.

“Ministers remain committed to agreeing a way forward for Fort Regent which makes use of the landmark building in future in a way that is realistic, affordable and sustainable.”

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