Nelson Basketball Association general manager Frances Tilly on the newly-revamped court next to Jack Robins Stadium in Stoke. Photo: Andrew Board.

Stoke court revamped

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Street ball is back in Stoke.

The run-down outdoor basketball court next to the Jack Robins Stadium in Stoke had been in urgent need of repairs.

The nets were gone, only one hoop was up, lines were nonexistent and the fence was falling in.

Along came Heather Walker, a local basketball volunteer, who called Nelson Basketball Association general manager Frances Tilly with an offer she couldn’t refuse.”

“Basically, Heather called say she had organised the whole upgrade. Spoken to Nayland College which did the back-boards and hoops; Fulton Hogan which is doing the lines and the New Gate Company which fixed the fence.”

Heather and her husband Dick even paid for the new chain nets that have been installed.

Frances says she was blown away with what Heather has done. “She’s an amazing volunteer but this is really great because so many people come down here to shoot hoops so it’s nice to have it properly fixed again. With two hoops even.”

Frances says the Jack Robins Stadium, where basketball in the region is based, has also had a modest makeover recently with the bathrooms and changing rooms being painted thanks to a working bee by ANZ Bank staff.

Frances says the sport is working hard to improve facilities and grow the game.

“We’re seeing a big increase. One example is our senior men’s league which has gone from three teams to eight.”

The new court will feature lines for 3×3 games for senior and junior players.