Athletics track in Mansfield park achieves national recognition

Berry Hill Park achieves national quality assurance standard
Berry Hill Park achieves national quality assurance standard

The Berry Hill Park athletics track in Mansfield has achieved a national quality assurance standard which allows it to hold top level competition events.

TrackMark is a standards accreditation issued by the sport's governing body, UK Athletics (UKA), and provides assurance that an athletics facility meets national standards for performance and health and safety.

A plaque marking the accreditation was unveiled by Executive Mayor Andy Abrahams on Monday 23 May on behalf of Mansfield District Council, who are corporate trustees of the park.

Mayor Andy said: "It's fantastic how this athletics track has been transformed in such a short space of time and returned to a standard which the district can be proud of and which will mean many more visitors coming here and enjoying spending time in our district.

"All credit to our Parks team for working closely with the Harriers and other partners to achieve this gold medal standard for Mansfield." 

Prior to Mansfield Harriers taking over the lease of the track, the Berry Hill Park facility, did not meet acceptable national standards and was not allowed to host athletics competitions under UKA policies. 

In the past year, the track has had new state-of-the-art LED floodlights and a brand new throws cage installed, the track professionally cleaned and the changing rooms and clubroom refurbished, thanks to funding from England Athletics, the Harriers, Mansfield District Council and the Radford Foundation, a charity set up by Mansfield Town Football Club owners John and Carolyn Radford.  

Pat Carlan, Chair of the Mansfield Harriers AC, said: "Thanks to a number of agencies getting involved and the goodwill of Mansfield District Council, this facility has now been turned around, and this summer will see a full programme of athletic competition at the Berry Hill site after an absence of over 10 years.

"The site is still work in progress as Mansfield Harriers continue to develop the facility to become a premier athletics hub for Nottinghamshire."

The track is a major feature in the council's ambition for Berry Hill to become a Destination Park offering the kind of facilities, attractions and events that will draw visitors from a much wider area.

Multi-million pound plans unveiled to the public earlier this year included a new multi-functional space, café, seating, toilets and changing space for visitors and those using the sports facilities, improved play areas, new footpaths and lighting to make getting around the park easy and inclusive, and a dedicated space to host events.

The council is now finalising a business plan to support funding bids to help make the project a reality.

Published: May 23rd 2022