The quest for an athletics track to be sited in Sedgefield began in 2010 in the build up to London 2012 and as a result of the success of Sedgefield Harriers in attracting large numbers of young people to the club to work with the club’s group of over twenty coaches. The club has worked closely with Durham County Council and has received support from the local community including from Sedgefield Town Council.
A site was sought for the track and initially this was expected to be at Sedgefield Community College but this proved not to be possible. With the help of Durham County Council a suitable site was identified in 2017 near to NETPark. This site has a number of significant advantages including that it is on the main road that runs through the East Durham Rural Corridor where there is an acknowledged shortage of sports and community facilities and because it is situated for employees of businesses on NETPark to use; and of course it is convenient for members of Sedgefield Harriers.
As the plans for the track developed it became apparent that there was also enthusiastic demand for the facility for the wider athletics community and the involvement of other clubs and organisations would only enhance the viability of the track over its lifetime. Therefore to broaden the appeal of the track including to assist in attracting usage from less advantaged communities the facility was named EDCAT.
The team leading the project have been steadfast in their goal of ensuring that EDCAT is a facility of the highest quality as the local community deserve; it will have all of the features required for track and field athletics and therefore will support throws, jumps, sprints and endurance running.
The team have also been careful that attention has been given in the project to ecology and landscaping. Facilities will be included so that local residents will be able to travel to and from the track on foot or cycle as much as possible.
It is anticipated that the track will be a first class facility and a positive asset for the local area.