LEISURE chiefs are attempting to find more than £2 million to build a multi-sports complex under plans to secure a lasting Olympic legacy.
South Derbyshire District Council wants to use the money to develop the rugby, cricket and football facility at Cockshut Lane recreation ground, in Melbourne.
Outdoor pitches, a pavilion and an artificial grass pitch will be included, with developers keen to add tennis and netball courts.
The aim is to start work this year if funding from governing bodies overseeing football and rugby can be secured to supplement £1 million from the district council, £250,000 from Derbyshire County Council and £50,000 from Sport England.
Stuart Batchelor, the district council’s head of community and planning, said the facility was a key part of ‘Igniting the Legacy’, the authority’s plan to reap a lasting sporting dividend from last summer’s Olympic and Paralympic Games in London.
“Last year was absolutely brilliant - our legacy is going to be even better,” he said.
“We will have some world-class sports facilities and some world-class athletes will be using them.
“And that will inspire a new generation of people doing sport and exercise.”
Other developments – already revealed by the Mail – will include a £500,000 investment in Green Bank Leisure Centre, in Swadlincote, and similar funding for a new artificial football pitch at Etwall Leisure Centre.
The authority also hopes to develop an outreach programme to host activities at venueswith no traditional sport links, such as Eureka Park, in Swadlincote.
It also wants to encourage more people to use the town’s ski centre and plans to take archery and laser combat into villages while sparking sporting involvement with an inflatable multi-use games area.
Badminton Australia, which was based at Etwall Leisure Centre before the Olympics, is looking to return there in November, providing an opportunity for players based in the area to learn from them.
Mr Batchelor said in the next two years the council was also looking to double the number of sports grants and leisure passes it gives to promising athletes.
He said it also wanted to help more of these sportsmen access elite training from the Derbyshire Institute of Sport.