INDOOR SPORTS ARENA
Fairfield Farm College is fundraising for a brand new Indoor Sports Arena for both student and community use. Below is some information on what we are planning with the Indoor Sports Arena, and you can download the full documentation to see all the plans below.
The Project – Indoor Sports Arena
Aim: To build a new indoor sports and education facility on the college site, behind the agricultural building, in keeping with existing buildings on the site. This facility would be multi-use and available for the community.
These activities include:
- To provide sheltered facilities for the students to work with animals
- All-year horse riding (current facilities are unsheltered and need replacing)
- Disability riding (hoist facility)
- Opportunities for students to gain specialist qualifications working with animals
- A range of sports and physical exercise for students health and fitness
- Space to host sports events for local schools
- Specific sports training for students and the community including football, volley ball and rugby
- Dog agility classes for the community
- Community facility including birthday party hire
- Specialist competition standard horse arena
Why we need this Indoor Sports Arena
It is difficult for students working on the farm and with the animals all year round in diverse weather conditions. An indoor space will provide a sheltered and warm environment for students to gain a range of work and independence skills. The indoor space will also provide greater opportunities for students to take park in physical activities to keep them healthy and engaged.
Additionally, the facility will offer opportunities for students to gain essential life skills to support their independent, for example, an equine environment where students care for horses offers opportunities to apply maths skills through weighing and measuring feed. Learning to care for animals can support the understanding of self-care, for example, learning to wash a horse mane encourages students to become independent in their own hair washing, whilst grooming leads to learning about personal care.
The new facility will provide a safe, dry space for the students to learn all year round. The indoor facility would enable us to provide a hoist so that students or individuals in wheelchairs can ride and take part in sports too, this simply is not possible with our current outdoor arena. This much-needed facility will open vocational opportunities and further qualifications for our students to enhance their learning and improve their employability skills. Without this facility, opportunities to maximise outcomes for young people are limited.
Who would use this facility?
This facility will support all students that attend Fairfield Farm College as well as children and young people in Wiltshire and surrounding areas that access the facilities during evenings and holiday periods. The arena will be utilised 7 days a week, during daytime and evening, by both the college and community groups. We currently have interest from Dog Agility groups and are able to fill the facility for four evenings per week. Riding for the Disabled would be able to access the arena with their own horses and volunteers on weekends. Sports groups including football, rugby and cricket clubs have all expressed interest in accessing an indoor facilty. The Indoor Equestrian Centre would also bring the community into the college to use the facility and encourage the sustainability of the project.
We conducted research locally to determine the demand for the facility. The survey gives a good indication of community involvement, this would mostly be for horse riding and dog agility by individuals or groups as well as community sports teams. With the majority of hire being for 1- 2 hours at a time. The new facility would offer further parking to accommodate the demand evidenced in the survey, with up to 30 parking spaces on site for cars/horse boxes.
Fairfield Farm College is well placed to ensure the sustainability of this project, we already have booking systems in place for the conference and sports facilities which we lease, catering facilities through our onsite café, marketing manager, charity fundraising manager, an onsite maintenance team and of course the students who can contribute through work based learning to help with the preparation of the horses and the arena for daily sessions, events and hire.
This usage estimate does not include other community groups or individuals that may want to hire our facility outside of those who have already expressed a commitment, so there is further potential to increase the community use.
What is the cost of this project?
The project costs are fluid with current estimate of £313,000.
We have sourced quotes from 3 indoor arena contractors. At this stage, we have approached one organisation that can undertake the full works including the building and the specific surfacing for the arena. Once we have raised £100,000 we will go out to tender to confirm a contractor.