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Coryton closure hits Pegasus club hard
3:20pm Wednesday 18th July 2012 in News
THE future of Petroplus’ popular sports facility in Corringham is hanging in the balance.
The Pegasus Club, a sports and social club in Herd Lane, is one of the company’s assets which could be sold by administrators PricewaterhouseCoopers.
As well as the clubhouse being hired out to the community for functions, the club is a much used sports ground, home to nine cricket teams, six football sides, two rugby teams, 60 members of a bowls club, three darts teams, a gymnasium and a fishing lake.
Pegasus member Gil Moore is keen for Shell, which is buying the refinery as a storage terminal, to take the club under its wing.
Mr Moore, from Anthony Drive, Corringham, said: “The Pegasus club has a total membership of more than 1,000 members and its facilities are second to none.
“The club is special to the local community, both young and old, and we feel it must remain as it is and not be sold off.
“If this consortium is allowed to get away with just buying out the refinery and doing nothing for the community, it will be criminal.
“PWC hasn’t told us anything yet, they have just said they will ‘deal’ with us in September. We won’t go down without a fight.”
Fellow member Ken Matthews, who also lives in Corringham, said: “This is the last remaining sports facility of its kind in Thurrock, to take it away would be wicked.”
Mr Moore said the redundancies at the oil refinery have hit the club hard, as just over half of its members work there and the rest are associate members.
He said: “The club is a self-sufficient organisation and does not cost anyone anything.
“As workers are being made redundant, they are not able to pay their memberships anymore, so the club is being strangled.”
Administrators PWC would not reveal what the plans for the club are.
A spokesman said: “The administrators are at this stage focusing energy on the process of closing the refinery, which is a complex exercise, and they will look at the options they have in due course.”
East Thurrock MP Stephen Metcalfe is hopeful a solution can be found.
He said: “What we’ve got to try and do is find an alternative to it just being disposed of.”
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