Cuttleslowe Park will benefit from a new £58,000 sports facility as Oxford’s first beach volleyball courts opened last weekend.
The culmination of five years of planning, fundraising and construction, the two courts are the only ones in the region and will provide opportunities for residents and visitors to play the sport.
Maïté Braud, Chairwoman of Oxford Volleyball Club’s beach volleyball court committee said that the club were delighted to see their dream become reality after half a decade in the planning.
“We are thrilled to finally have beach volleyball courts in Oxford,” she said. “We initially mentioned this in 2011 to Oxford City Council and, together with them and Volleyball England, we managed to secure the funding and get the project off the ground.
“To play or practice on beach volleyball courts before, we had to travel at least 60 miles to use a facility. To have competition standard courts right on our doorstep is a great opportunity for us and the wider community.
“We welcome people from all over the region to come and have a try.”
Along with providing a training centre for regional volleyball athletes, one of the most important ambitions for these courts is to provide opportunities for the general public to try beach volleyball.
There are already coach-led sessions available for all levels, and local schools have started to use the courts to introduce beach volleyball into their curriculum.
Beach volleyball was one of the most popular sports during London 2012 and it is expected to be the star attraction at the Rio Games later this month.
As the sport becomes more popular, Oxfordshire residents and others in the area will have a chance try the sport and have fun while staying active and healthy.
Rohan West, participation director at Volleyball England said new facilities such as this are crucial to the legacy of the Olympics.
“Beach volleyball is an incredibly popular version of our sport. It’s fun, it’s a great way to stay active and you don’t need to be an expert. You can just turn up with a couple of friends and have a go.
“We were delighted to work alongside Oxford Volleyball Club to make this project happen and we look forward to bringing beach volleyball to a wider audience.”
Oxford Beach Volleyball Club held an official opening ceremony for the new courts on Sunday 31st July.
This event began with a ribbon cutting with local city council members and distinguished members of England’s volleyball community. The Oxford Beach Volleyball Club provided an introduction to beach volleyball for beginners, including demonstrations and coaching.
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