Athletics Stadium investment on track ahead of Commonwealth Games
Telford’s main athletics track in Oakengates is to receive a £100,000 investment – anticipating a major surge in interest and participation in athletics ahead of the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham.
The council-owned athletics track is home to Telford Athletics Club and is just over 30-odd miles from Birmingham, which will welcome around 6,500 athletes and officials for the Games in the summer of 2022.
Telford & Wrekin Council is committed to exploring how the borough can get involved in the Games, including possibly providing facilities for athletes and officials to use.
The £100,000 funding will help to upgrade the track which is regularly used for regional and national athletics events.
Upgrades will include a complete track resurfacing, including the removal of the existing surface and respray using a new rubber crumb coating. The work is expected to be completed later this year.
The track is also next to Oakengates Leisure Centre complete with a fitness suite, soon to be newly refurbished fitness class studio and 25m swimming pool, an added attraction for Games athletes.
The resurfacing of the track and further improvements to the spectator seating and stand will be funded by a combination of the council’s asset management fund and the Telford 50 Legacy funding.
Councillor Hilda Rhodes, cabinet member and Oakengates ward member, said: “This will be a very welcome investment in this well used facility.
“The profile of athletics as a sport is set to rise and rise the closer we get to the 2022 Games and we want Telford to play a full part in that and investment like that is key in ensuring we are in the best position to do so.
“It’s another example of how we’re improving different community facilities to help create a better borough and attract more visitors and investment here.”
Paul Sanderson, Secretary of Telford Athletics Club said: “It is fantastic news that Telford & Wrekin Council are investing in the athletics track at Oakengates Leisure Centre.”
“The resurface of the track combined with the upgrade of facilities for spectators will mean that not only can the facility continue to host local and regional events for many more years but also the experience of those attending to support athletes will also be much improved.”
“With the next Commonwealth Games being held just down the road in Birmingham in 2022, it is exciting times for athletics in Telford.”