Premier League, FA and Government give funding to help improve football pitches in South Tyneside
A community association is celebrating after securing a £31,000 grant to improve the quality of its football pitches.
Hedworthfield Community Association on Cornhill has been awarded the funding from the Premier League the Football Association and Government’s Football Foundation.
The Football Foundation is the UK’s largest sports charity and aims to improve the experience of playing football for everyone, by championing fair access to quality facilities.
The £31,000 is a six-year tapered grant, part of the foundation’s Grass Pitch Maintenance Fund.
The fund provides eligible clubs and leagues with grants to help them sustain pitches already at a “good” level or higher, and improve pitches considered either “poor” or “basic”.
The money will help Hedworthfield to improve the overall quality of the four grass pitches at their site.
They will now be able to use the grant to complete the maintenance work identified in an assessment report, which includes applying fertiliser, aeration, seeding and other maintenance.
A pitch inspection was carried out using the Football Foundation’s specially developed app, PitchPower; a mobile tool used to assess the quality of grass football pitches. The foundation wants to help create 5,000 more quality pitches before the end of 2024.
The grant comes as part of an investment of more than £16million made available to help clubs prepare for the restart of grassroots football following the covid pandemic.
A delighted Christine Green, manager at Hedworthfield said: “We would like to thank the football foundation, the FA and Premier League and Durham FA for investing in Hedworthfield CA.
“The grant will be a huge help for us in the coming years to help improve our grass pitches and will make a big improvement to our players and supporters.”
Chris Hutchinson, facilities and investment officer for Durham County FA said: “It’s brilliant to see that the CA have been give this grant in order to take their pitches to the ‘next level’ and give players, both home and away, an even better match day experience.”
Robert Sullivan, chief executive of the Football Foundation, said: “This grant award to Hedworthfield Community Association towards improving its four grass pitches is vital for the local community in Jarrow as they get back to playing football.”