Plans for £800,000 artificial football pitch get the green light after funding confirmed
Berwick is to get its first artificial grass pitch which will provide high quality football facilities throughout the year.
Northumberland County Council and Active Northumberland have been successful in a bid for £400,000 funding.
The money will come from the Premier League, The FA and Government’s Football Foundation, which provides grants towards developing new or refurbished grassroots football facilities.
The council is making up the £400,000 balance of the costs as part of its wider investment in leisure in the town.
The new pitch will be situated on the current leisure centre site and will be suitable for full size football matches but with the flexibility to reconfigure it for training purposes or seven-a-side matches.
Its durable, all weather surface will provide opportunities for year round training and match play. Outdoor football changing facilities will be incorporated into the new Berwick Sports Centre and floodlighting will be available.
Work is expected to start on the new pitch in spring and it is hoped it will be completed by autumn.
Coun Cath Homer, cabinet member with responsibility for leisure said: “The pitch will bring huge benefits to schoolchildren, local sports clubs and community groups and is part of this council's drive to make sure top class sporting and leisure facilities are available in Berwick. We are very grateful to the Premier League, The FA and the Government through the Football Foundation for their grant and support of grassroots sport.”
Council leader Peter Jackson added: “It was clear from talking to local football clubs that a new all weather pitch was a real priority for the town. At the moment teams are travelling down to Alnwick or across the border to play on all weather pitches and that isn’t right.”
The 3G pitch forms part of a wider £20million county council investment in sport and leisure for Berwick. Work has now commenced on the building of a state of the art new sports centre which will incorporate a five-lane, 25 m swimming pool, a teaching pool and leisure pool and spa facilities. There will also be a sports hall, indoor bowls, fitness studios, cafe and a sensory room.