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Re-developed Sports Facility Opens

Professor Chris Day, Vice-Chancellor and President, has opened Newcastle University’s latest sport facility project.

6 December 2019

Following a 12-month redevelopment, Cochrane Park Sports Ground has re-opened boasting three floodlit artificial turf pitches.

The sports complex features a pavilion extension. It houses changing rooms, physiotherapy and seminar rooms, a rowing ergo and training area, and extended bus and car parking. The site also has a dedicated reception area.

It will be the home for both representative and intramural rugby union and football as well as our American Football and Ultimate Frisbee clubs. Spectators will be able to watch the action from pitchside or from the licenced bar balcony operated by the Students Union.

Newcastle University’s latest sport facility project has been officially opened by Professor Chris Day, Vice-Chancellor and President.

Professor Day said: “I was very happy to be asked to perform the official re-opening of our sports ground here at Cochrane Park. For me, sport is such an important part of who we are as a University.

“One of the things I believe we’re exceptionally good at is helping our high-performing athletes. We help them balance the demands of playing their chosen sport within their academic studies. This is something that has always underpinned our approach to Performance Sport.

“Playing sport helps our students develop as team players. It teaches them to be self-disciplined, supports mental health and wellbeing. It gives them the opportunity to meet and form friendships with fellow students from outside their academic study group.”

Colin Blackburn, Director of Sports Services, added “The site is fully operational. The three new artificial turf pitches have significantly increased the sporting opportunities and activity levels for our students. It's enabled the expansion of our participation and performance sport programmes.

“The redevelopment has changed Cochrane Park. The site was operational for three afternoons per week. But now the facility hosts sports activity five nights per week and all weekend. It has also enabled us to provide sports facilities to the local community. This is through major hire agreements with Northumberland Football Leagues (we host girls U8-U12 on Saturdays and mixed U7-U8 teams on Sundays). Team Gosforth, who have more than 200 junior members, and Tyne Met College host their football development courses here.”