Enhancing the Sydenham Cricket Club's Indoor Sports Centre
We sat down with Graham Harris, President of the Sydenham Cricket Club, where he talks us through their journey of bringing the club's indoor sports centre project to life.
Having an existing relationship with Perennial Sport and Turf Equipment, he tells us about the vital role Geoff and the team played in making their vision a reality, how together they overcame challenges, and ensured a top-notch facility for the community and the club. Read the full interview here.
In the world of sports, every project is a testament to dedication and collaboration. The journey of the Sydenham Cricket Club's indoor sports and Community Centre, in partnership with Perennial Sport and Turf Equipment, exemplifies this spirit. Graham, the president of the club, reflects on their journey, the challenges they faced, and how Perennial's unwavering commitment transformed their vision into reality.
“My name is Graham Harris, and I'm the president of the Sydenham Cricket Club and have been for the last 14 years.
We undertook the construction of an indoor sports and Community Centre, a project managed by the cricket club but intended to be a venue for both the local community and the club. My role was extensive, involving project leadership, design, construction coordination, liaising with builders and architects, and securing funding. I was quite hands-on throughout.”
Q: Did you know about Perennial and the products and services they offer before the project commenced?
A: Absolutely. It's a small community, and we were already familiar with Perennial's presence in the sports supply sector. While we had interacted with them before, albeit not on such a scale, they had supplied equipment for various sport disciplines needs, including cricket.
Q: Tell us more about the project?
A: The construction of the Sydenham Cricket Club indoor sport and community centre commenced in October of 2022. The building itself spans approximately 34 meters in length and 20 meters in width, making it quite a sizable indoor centre. Although the construction was relatively straightforward, involving elements such as a concrete slab floor, steel framework, and iron cladding, it also incorporated an atrium with offices and gear storage. The construction phase was intended to conclude early in 2023, but there were a few curve balls that needed to deal with and we only concluded in May-June of 2023.
Q: Can you elaborate on this?
A: Certainly. We planned to get Perennial involved to install the netting towards the end of the project. However, we encountered substantial delays due to unforeseen challenges, particularly related to Council demands. Since the building was situated on council land, we faced consent-related issues that led to redraws and variations, causing delays. We communicated these timeline disruptions to Perennial, even though it posed certain challenges.
Q: Did you have to deal with any specific challenges in the actual build and how did Perennial deal with it?
A: Indeed, there were significant challenges. During excavation, we stumbled upon a major power cable not indicated in the plans. Given its critical importance to the local community's power supply, we had to adjust the slab's location, moving it closer to the park end. Unfortunately, this change brought us uncomfortably close to tree roots, which posed a unique set of issues. Communicating these fluctuations to Perennial was crucial, as their involvement was near the project's completion. This was further complicated by their simultaneous commitment to projects like setting up nets for the Women's World Cup, which had strict timelines. Perennial's ability to manage these demands was astounding. I recall instances of their team working late into the night on weekends to meet timelines. We were under pressure to complete within a specific timeframe due to pre-scheduled school holiday programs, and Perennial's flexibility and commitment were exceptional.
Q: Would you recommend Perennial?
A: Absolutely. The construction journey is seldom straightforward, and Perennial's aptitude for problem-solving is exceptional. Another issue emerged during the final setup, involving fire regulation compliance for the netted interior. Perennial ingeniously developed swinging doors to meet safety requirements while preserving functionality. This curveball emerged late in the process, and Perennial's solution-oriented approach, including weekend efforts and engineering consultations, ensured a swift resolution. Their attitude was pivotal in achieving a quick conclusion.
Q: If you were to comment on the quality of the nets and products provided by Perennial?
A First class, I mean, it's just quality netting. That's the point. They supply a wide variety of gear to the sporting trade, both at the wholesale level, but also at club level. They are very careful about the type of product that they sell and ensure that it is absolutely fit for purpose. We never ever doubted them in the quality of what they provide.
“We are very pleased with the result. They’re a very good company and they’re after sales service is great. Our lane nets concertina back to create an open space when needed. And one of the nets was just grabbing on a track rail, nothing major... But one of the runners just seemed to have a little bit of a hiccup as it was being dragged back. I mean, Geoff had a guy down there within the day. And problem solved, it was fixed instantly. You know, there's just no problem. They are very ‘can-do’ group. That's all I can say. It's, it's it was a pleasure working with him. Fantastic.”
Graham's insights offer a testament to the value Perennial Sport and Turf Equipment brings to projects like the Sydenham Cricket Club's indoor sports and community centre. Their problem-solving proficiency, dedication to product quality, and responsive after-sales service proved crucial in overcoming challenges and delivering exceptional results. This partnership exemplifies the impact of collaborative efforts in creating successful sports infrastructure.