Members vote to save club

An artist's impression of proposed changes to Club Banora.
An artist's impression of proposed changes to Club Banora. Tweed Daily News

TWIN Towns Services Club members have voted in favour of a plan that will sell or lease part of the Club Banora site to save the cash-strapped club.

After more than 18 months of planning and discussions with members, more than 90 per cent of the 317 people who attended the AGM on Tuesday night voted in favour of building a new $24.4 million clubhouse from the proceeds of the land sale.

“It's sensational news for the future of Club Banora,” said Twin Towns chairman Michael Fraser.

“We only needed 50 per cent of the meeting plus one other member to approve the change and we got 90 per cent.

“It's reward for the effort that we went to in making sure that this was the best way to head to ensure Club Banora's long-term future.”

The proposal put forward by consultant KPMG and approved by the members would see three hectares of Club Banora's 57-hectare holding either sold, leased or developed by the club in a joint-venture arrangement to fund a total re-build of the ageing Leisure Drive clubhouse.

“The option that we take will be the one that will best maximise our profits,” Mr Fraser said.

“Ideally we would not want to put in any money to develop the site, but if that is the best way forward to ensure the future of the club, then that is what we will do.

“But the next stage is seeking the land to be rezoned before any plans for the new clubhouse or the parcel of land are put forward.”

The club will soon submit paperwork to Tweed Shire Council to rezone the land that includes part of the Club Banora car park and bowling greens, and shares a border with the Banora Point Village shopping centre.

“We will be seeking a re-zoning that will best allow us to capitalise on the site.

“The site would be best suited to something like a commercial and retail development, or maybe even an aged-care hostel.

“What will actually happen on the land is still up in the air, but finding new revenue streams is something most clubs are facing, because we have to replace revenue lost in poker machine taxes and the downturn in trade from smoking bans.”

Twin Towns is not the only club looking to cash in on assets to stay afloat.

Seagulls Club members will consider a plan at its May 25 AGM to allow part of the Tweed Heads West clubhouse to be leased to outside interests as well as allow the possible development of the car park.

The plan could see the Stardust Auditorium converted into a theatre restaurant.

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