“State of the art” Rugby Centre proposed for Ballymore
Brisbane may become home to a state–of-the-art training centre for Australian rugby that could also serve
teams from throughout the Asia-Pacific region.
Queensland Rugby Union Chairman Peter Lewis said the proposed multi-million Ballymore Rugby Centre of
Excellence would also include a Rugby Hall of Fame and an archive for preserving rugby history and
Mr Lewis said the Australian Rugby Union, the state government and Brisbane City Council all supported
conducting a feasibility study into the regional centre of excellence project, to be modelled on French
Rugby’s Centre National de Rugby near Paris.
Queensland Rugby has proposed that the new training centre be built on land adjacent to its headquarters at
Ballymore, in the near-city Brisbane suburb of Herston.
It would include advanced sports medicine and training facilities, gymnasium, swimming pool and on-site
accommodation for use of the Wallabies and visiting teams.
When not being used by rugby teams the accommodation could be offered to teams from other sports.
“Ballymore is already the spiritual home of Queensland Rugby. This proposed project will open that home to
the wider rugby family, potentially including teams from the South Pacific and Japan,” Mr Lewis said.
“It would be a state of the art training facility with everything a professional rugby team could need.”
Mr Lewis said offering use of the facility to rugby nations in the region like Samoa, Fiji and Tonga would
assist the International Rugby Board in its efforts to help those countries keep up with the pace of player
development in the professional era.
“We have a coach in Eddie Jones who has good connections in the Pacific and in Japan, to help facilitate
national training camps at the new centre,” Mr Lewis said.
“The new complex would offer motel-style player accommodation designed expressly for the needs of
professional players, as well as hostel-type accommodation for visiting junior teams.”
Mr Lewis said such a centre would have tremendous future potential for Australian Rugby, while also
offering a home for its history.
“Australian and Queensland Rugby have been crying out for something like the proposed Rugby Hall of Fame
and archive, and where better to house it than at an iconic location like Ballymore?
“Rugby and Ballymore are synonymous. This is a tremendous resource, one of very few property assets owned
by rugby in Australia, and we see it having an important role to play in the future of the game.”
The Queensland Rugby Union set up headquarters at Ballymore in 1966 under a deed of grant from the state
In 2004 the QRU moved into new headquarters on an escarpment overlooking the 20,000 seat stadium, which is
now mainly used for non-professional matches as the QR Queensland Reds now play their home games in the
Tooheys New Super 14 at Suncorp Stadium.