Plans for landmark dodgeball centre in Hartlepool

Planners are being asked not to dodge plans to create a new landmark sporting centre in Hartlepool.

Wednesday, 17th April 2019, 2:48 pm
Updated Wednesday, 17th April 2019, 3:00 pm

The proposals submitted by Paul Hewitson, on behalf of Stott Fitness, state they want to bring the first dedicated dodgeball centre in the UK to Hartlepool.

The centre would be in the building adjacent to the Iceland Food store on the Oakesway Trading Estate off Skerne Road, which is currently empty, according to plans submitted to Hartlepool Borough Council.

Hartlepool Mavericks dodgeball Club members in action

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A planning statement on behalf of the applicant states they have targeted the site as there is a demand for dodgeball in the area, shown by the popularity of the Hartlepool Mavericks Dodgeball Club.

It said: “There has been a notable demand for children’s dodgeball and as such the Hartlepool Mavericks Dodgeball Club now has 120 Hartlepool children registered and partaking in classes each week.

“The existing setup of the dodgeball club is restrictive in that the club has only been able to rent hall space from other community venues for a limited number of sessions each week.

“We have identified that the only way to offer more to the young people in town is to establish the first “dodgeball centre” in the U.K. here in Hartlepool.

Hartlepool Mavericks Dodgeball club could soon have a new home

“It is worth noting that this centre would be one of the first of its kind in the United Kingdom and as such a fantastic asset and benefit to our residents.”

The building would offer one full size dodgeball court, along with three smaller courts, a coaching area, activity room and a waiting area for parents.

The proposed hours for the unit, which is joined on to the Iceland site and has been unoccupied for 10 years, would be 4pm until 9pm Monday to Friday and it would also be open on a Saturday.

Across the country there are over 85 dodgeball clubs affiliated to British Dodgeball, the leading dodgeball association in the UK, three of which are in the North East of England; Hartlepool Mavericks, Billingham Bulls and Middlesbrough Bombers.

Members of Hartlepool Mavericks Dodgeball Club in action

The planning statement on behalf of Stott Fitness also added it could attract people from across the country to Hartlepool.

It said: “Clubs are the bedrock to the sport of dodgeball.

“This could bring national visitors to the area building on club awareness and the sports development.”

Stott Fitness is a community company that has several organisations within it, including the Hartlepool Mavericks Dodgeball Club.

Lucinda Stott, director of Stott Fitness, is an unpaid member of the British Dodgeball team and currently holds the title of director of National Teams.

Hartlepool Borough Council planning department is aiming to make a decision on the plans in the next month.

To comment on the application visit the Hartlepool Borough Council planning portal online and search reference number H/2019/0101.

Nic Marko , Local Democracy Reporting Service