AN attempt to stop sports clubs being moved out of Fort Regent has been launched – with the government aiming to rehome all but five organisations by next year.
The Friends of Fort Regent group – set up by Islander Roy Travert – has ‘strongly urged’ States Members to ‘consider the immense value that these facilities bring to the local community and keep the sports facilities open’.
In an open letter, the Friends of Fort Regent – comprising Mr Travert, Ivor Thompson, Roger Barons and Stephanie Berg – yesterday asked States Members to ‘reconsider any plans to close or repurpose the sports facilities at Fort Regent’.
The letter adds: ‘We believe that it is essential to continue to invest in these facilities, not only for the benefit of the local community but also for the long-term prosperity of the Island as a whole.
‘We urge you to listen to the voices of the many individuals and organisations who have spoken out in favour of preserving these important resources.’
The group has also set up an online petition to ‘enable clubs and members of the public to register their objections to the removal of facilities’.
It has gained over 300 signatures in the past four days. The future of the Fort has been on the political agenda for decades, with the latest plans featuring a hotel, cinema, bowling alley and conference centre.
However, last month those proposals were seemingly put on hold when Infrastructure Minister Tom Binet said that the plans which had been developed under the previous government were ‘unfeasible in the current economic climate’.
Speaking to the JEP this week, Deputy Binet confirmed that a building survey would be commissioned in the near future to provide ministers with an overarching view on the condition of the building and roof.
‘Once we know what the fabric is, then we can start to look at what to do with it,’ he said.
Earlier this year, it was confirmed that the number of government services, sports clubs and commercial enterprises operating at Fort Regent had reduced from 39 in 2019 to 21 in 2023. It is expected to reduce to five next year.