For years to come, football players will remember an outstanding player, coach and referee Graham Coe, with the Cookbundoon Pavilion to be named in his honour.
Work is almost complete on the new Graham Coe Pavilion named in honour of Mr Coe’s strong contribution to the sport and the formation of the Southern Tablelands Football Association.
STFA Football Manager Craig Norris said Mr Coe was a Life Member of the association and a dedicated volunteer who was passionate about the game and its players.
Mr Coe was instrumental in having the original building at Goodhew Park built for the local soccer community in the late 1970s.
At just 32 years of age, he died of heart failure while coaching during an under-12 mid-season cup final game in July 1982, and the building at Goodhew Park was dedicated to his memory during that season’s grand final day.
“In the 90s we moved to our new, bigger venue and transferred the memorial plaque out there to keep him with his soccer family,” Mr Norris said.
“And when the new building was being built at the Cookbundoon sports grounds, we lobbied council to have it dedicated to him.
“It’s great to be able to recognise and honour people who have contributed to the game, and it’s a real honour for the older members that knew him and for the members of the under-12 team at the time.”
Due for completion this month, the new pavilion will include six change rooms, a function room, canteen, officials change rooms, public amenities, storeroom, office and a verandah.
Mr Norris said the association is excited to get to use the new facility once play recommences post lockdown.
“The addition of change rooms and in particular for our girls, is huge for the sport and will be a game changer,” he said.
“Female participation in soccer in our region is on the rise with nearly a third of all our participants now being females which is fantastic.”
Goulburn Mulwaree Mayor Bob Kirk hopes to be able to officially open the pavilion soon.
“Soccer is perhaps the largest sport in our region based on player numbers, and this upgrade to provide essential facilities such as changerooms for our female players was overdue,” he said.
“It would be great to see the facilities utilised in 2021, so I hope the STFA are able to complete their finals series as planned.”
Federal Member for Hume Angus Taylor said this is a significant investment in the Goulburn community.
“Seeing facilities like this being delivered is another big win for the local community, and I’m looking forward to enjoying a game at Cookbundoon when local sport resumes,” said Mr Taylor.
A total of $572,884 for the project was obtained through the federal Local Roads and Community Infrastructure Program with Goulburn Mulwaree Council also contributing $500,000.