Stockport eyes up new £1m community sports facility thanks to double funding boost

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stockportThe funding will enable South Manchester Sports Club to provide a new changing pavilion, a new 3rd generation artificial grass pitch, floodlighting and drainage work on the grass pitches.

This new and improved sports provision will allow the club to develop and expand their football teams and enable them to continue to provide opportunities for local people to participate in sport.

There are over 300 members currently within South Manchester Sports Club which is expanding year on year. The club has hitherto been playing at various sites, schools and sports clubs within the local area and the club has never had a ‘home base’. Despite such a number of active clubs there is a chronic shortage of quality playing facilities in the area; this site will meet this demand.

The club already have ten teams at various age groups and the new facility will enable them to grow to 18 teams within the next four years catering for boys and girls from 4-16 year olds with exit routes into the adult game.

This facility will also act as a football hub for other teams within the local area for both playing and training purposes and will provide competitive opportunities to play football for all age groups wherever possible. The plan will focus on more girls teams and improved links with the local schools and will target the recruitment of coaches, volunteers and referees. It will also increase opportunities in junior and Mini Soccer and will also provide opportunities for players with a disability.

The new site will also add value to Stockport Council’s sports strategy, as well as the strategies of The FA, England Netball, Hockey and the Lawn Tennis Association.

The Football Foundation is dedicated to revitalising the grass roots of the game, constructing modern football facilities, developing football as a force for social cohesion and as a vehicle for education in communities throughout the country. Funded by the Premier League, The Football Association and the Government, the Football Foundation is the nation’s largest sports charity with a £40m budget going straight into the heart of football.

Paul Thorogood, Chief Executive of the Football Foundation said: “This new project in Cheadle, Stockport is but one example of thousands across the country that the Football Foundation is supporting. Stockport alone has benefited from 26 Football Foundation projects worth £2.6m. This includes the William Scholes Playing Fields in Gatley, which received a Foundation grant of £613,523 and was just two weeks ago.

“We warmly congratulate South Manchester Sports Club and the Cheshire County FA for their hard work and dedication in securing this award.”

england-australiaAnne Boyd, Sport England’s Regional Lead for the North West, said: “South Manchester Sports Club’s new facilities will give a real boost to the local community and benefit a wide range of participants, including footballers, netball and hockey players. Sport England is pleased to invest in this project because it has been developed in partnership and the new facilities will be used by clubs, schools and the local community for years to come.”

Jonathan Davis, Chairman of South Manchester Sports Club, said: “I am delighted, after 13 years of hard work, that we have been successful in securing this Football Foundation grant. This will bring significant benefits to the wider sporting community as well as providing much needed facilities for the local area.”

For information on the Football Foundation contact Rory Carroll on 0845 345 4555 ext. 4280, or rory.carroll@footballfoundation.org.uk.

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