The North Hobart Oval is a much loved part of Hobart’s sporting and cultural heritage. It has hosted royalty, music and sport legends, as well as major festivals and civic events. One constant of the ground and its evolution has been the North Hobart Football Club who have worked with Hobart City Council, State and Federal Governments to continue to adapt to changing needs of the public and maintain the ageing infrastructure.
The days of attracting 15,000 people to a footy final may have passed, but the ground is very well placed to be a boutique stadium facility that offers unique charm and history, as was well displayed earlier this year by hosting the first AFLW match to be played in Tasmania and televised to a national audience. In recent years the oval has been resurfaced, including new drainage, upgraded the power supply, replaced lighting to allow night or twilight fixtures, installed new terrace seating and rebuilt the Ryde St grandstand.
All changerooms have been remodelled to accommodate men’s and women’s sports. The North Hobart Football Club has been able to secure funding for the next stage of improvements. This includes a new kiosk, an undercover wet area, new coaches and media boxes on the Rydges side of the ground. A lift is being installed into the Plaister stand and this will improve access for disabled and aged patrons to the upper level function room which hosts events on game days. An objective of the improvements is to allow the facility to become a venue of choice for many sporting codes including “rectangle” based sports such as soccer and both rugby codes.
Melbourne Storm and Melbourne Rebels have successfully played several pre-season games at the oval and rate the venue very highly. But it does not stop there, with the North Hobart Football Club already eyeing off the next upgrade which is to improve change room and gym facilities in the Gorringe stand area. As with any community activity, so much is owed to the volunteers and their relationships with other stakeholders and, in this case, the relationships between NHFC, HCC and governments have endured for well over the last 100 years! Devine Property is a proud partner of the North Hobart Football Club and who knows, we may get back to hosting 15,000 people at this wonderful landmark.