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Sports & Leisure Facilities

Helped perhaps by the position of the centre off the main roads, and the stalwart support of some long- term resident families, Ropley enjoys an unusually strong community spirit and life, with about 24 lo- cal organisations. These cover sports like cricket and football, bowling and tennis. Shooting and gamekeeping take place. There is a flourishing Hor- ticultural Society, a bi-annual village Fayre, and the annual Pram Race. The Dramatic Society performs in the Parish Hall and there are numerous events held to support the Playgroup, the School and the Church.

There was a surprising lack of opinion (86%) on the facilities for people with disabilities. Only 85 felt that these facilities were good or reasonable.

Of the 186 members of Ropley Clubs only 144 (77%) actually used the facilities in Ropley, but more people (244) travel (that car again) out of Ropley to use either the Alton Sports Centre, River Park at Winchester, Petersfield Sports Centre or to a private gym club.

There was a good response to the question on activities for young people, but 51% of these re- spondents expressed no interest.

There were 186 (21%) people who said they be- longed to one of the sports or leisure clubs in Rop- ley. Of the 701 who don’t belong, 484 said they don’t want to take part in these activities.

A further 116 also gave a number of reasons for not taking part, from unsuitable opening hours, ac- cess problems, lack of transport, to being too expen- sive. The balance of the respondents blamed poor publicity for not participating, in spite of BisMonRopTis, the local magazine.

On average 30% were aware of what was on of- fer at the Beavers, Cubs, Scouts, Brownies, Guides, Junior Cricket (three teams), tennis and theatre group. Between 15% and 20% were not aware of these activities.

There was a poor response (34 replies) to the question “Are there any facilities for children over 11 you would like to see in the village”, but 60% of those who answered the question wished to have some form of youth club, and there were 104 people volunteering help.

The Hampshire Hunt meeting outside “The Shant”, more recently the Water- cress Inn and now a kitchen show- room. Modern traffic conditions on the A31 would make this rather hazardous today…

Ropley at the Millennium — 35

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