FORMER Tunapuna MP Esmond Forde hailed the work of four individuals and one organisation for boosting sports in the constituency, at the handover ceremony of the refurbished Honeymoon Recreation Grounds. The Sports Company of TT (SporTT) handed it over to the Tunapuna/Piarco Regional Corporation (TPRC.)
Those honoured were Carlos Selby Burgess, Winston “Hong” Martin, Priscilla Monica Ferguson, Kirk “Honeyman” Hinkson and the Moosai Sports Club.
They each received plaques. Forde said Burgess had learnt his skills as a footballer right there and had gone on to play for TT. The former MP hailed Martin for having been a football player who had then moved on to organise football competitions for 25 years. Ferguson was remembered as a head nurse and a past councillor in the area. Hinkson was the first ever custodian for the park. Forde remarked on the plaques by saying they recognised a continuity of efforts over the years to provide recreational facilities. “We may be doing it now and someone else will do it in the future. Be sure there is a history.”
He invited local councillor Prakash Bharath to help present the plaques.
Forde said the refurbishment included upgrades to the lighting, running track and basketball court among other things.
Gabre Mc Tair, Assistant Director of Physical Education in the Ministry of Sport, said the grounds must be a safe space providing communal facilities and serve as an epicentre for change in the community. “Start a cricket club, have weekly football games, or even initiate an exercise or boot camp challenge. Women and girls, do not be intimidated, this space is also for you to get involved in sport and physical activity.”
He said in the past five years, the ministry has spent millions of dollars to develop, refurbish and upkeep similar facilities, including the Irwin Park Regional Facility and the Aranguez, Bourg Mulatresse, Brian Lara, Grand Riviere, Morne Diablo and Todd’s Road Recreation Grounds.
SporTT director Hayden Mitchell said the contract to upgrade Honeymoon Grounds was awarded in 2012 but then just before the scheduled hand over in 2016, the whole facility had been vandalised. Collaboration with the TPRC had resulted in the present refurbishment. “Treat this as your house.”
He urged anyone who sees people mistreating the grounds such as stealing taps to step in and tell the police.
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