The new Broome SLSC clubhouse. Image: Facebook.

Broome Surf Life Saving Club’s new clubhouse opened in early July, as part of a larger redevelopment of Cable Beach’s foreshore redevelopment.

The old clubhouse – which was no longer structurally sound due to corrosion – was razed, and a new clubhouse was built for just over $4m. The clubhouse is just one part of  a $36m redevelopment of the foreshore of Western Australia’s most famous beach.

The new clubhouse was opened in early July, with new state-of-the-art facilities, including a 110sqm functions and training room that can be divided in half as required. The clubhouse also has a gym area, an inclusion the previous clubhouse did not have. External public toilets have been added which are open for the club’s operating hours, as well as internal access for disabled and ambulant toilets. A new commercial kitchen facility has also been included, with the hopes that Broome SLSC will acquire a license for a commercial operation of a café. And while the clubhouse always had a bar, the new facilities are a major upgrade.

“What we have now is a state-of-the-art facility,” stated club manager Lauren Henderson.

“We have a really incredible facility that we intend to use for whole-of-community activity. We’d like to be able to open it up to as many community groups as we can, not just for the use of our own surf club.”

With a restricted club license only allowing members and their guests to use the clubhouse, the new facilities have seen a huge boost of social memberships to Broome SLSC in the six weeks since reopening.

“It’s been overwhelmingly positive. We’ve probably sold 500 social memberships, since we’ve been open. And I think associated with the general excitement amongst our membership group, we’ve got some of our highest Nipper enrollment numbers this year. We’ve also got some really healthy patrolling member numbers as well, which we hope to continue to build on,” stated Henderson.

“We definitely see that the interest and excitement in the community about the facility is really high.”

Since reopening, the clubhouse is already being used in ways it hadn’t been previously – including being used for more corporate functions and training sessions. Already, members of the club have hosted to Surf Rescue Certificate (SRC) training sessions with the public, as well as internal training sessions. Workshops with school groups are already booked in for the coming months.

“I can see, outside of the social use of the club, that the use of the training room facilities for those sorts of things has really expanded, whereas what we had before probably wasn’t really fit for purpose. No people are coming to us, where they would have sought out other venues around town,” explains Henderson.

The clubhouse redevelopment was made possible through generous grant funding by Lotterywest, Kimberley Development Commission (Kimberley Regional Grant Scheme) and the Department of Local Government, Sport & Cultural Industries (Community Sporting and Recreation Facilities Fund).

Major contractors involved in the project include CWD Builders, Laird Tran Studios (architect and superintendent) and the Shire of Broome, who provided project management services free of charge as their contribution to the project.

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