WELBECK FC and people living in the Meden Vale area were this week celebrating a major sporting boost the the area with the award of £259,278 cash injection of £259,278 from the Football Foundation.
The grant, handed over by Chris Barry of the Football Foundation at a special ceremony last week, will go towards developing a state-of-the-art sports pavilion and new pitches at Welbeck FC.
Graham Hall, Welbeck chairman, said: “We’ve been waiting a long time for a project like this and it truly is a fantastic facility to serve the football club, the Meden Vale community and surrounding villages.
“We’re extremely grateful to the Foundation and everyone who has contributed for their fantastic support.”
An additional grant of £150,000 has come from The FA, as part of their capital allocation within the Whole Sport Plan agreed with Sport England.
This specific aspect of funding has been awarded to support the sustainability of community clubs and create more opportunities to participate in sport within a high quality environment.
When finished the site will boast four dual gender use changing rooms with associated toilets and showers, two officials changing rooms with en-suite facilities, a kitchen, a storage area and spectator toilets. Also included in the project is a new full size grass pitch and junior grass pitch.
The new complex will serve a key multi-sport function with provisions for rugby and bowls factored into the design.
Welbeck FC, a FA Charter Standard Community Club, currently operates 16 teams on pitches throughout the district and this investment will help them grow to 21 teams. Forecasts suggest that as a result of the Foundation’s grant, participation on the vastly improved site will rocket by 416 per cent.
Welbeck Colliery is one of the last remaining working pits in England but is due for closure.
The ‘Welfare’ is still the key focal sporting and social hub of the village and this project offers the community an opportunity to increase its sporting activities in the face of severe economic deprivation.
Kirkby-based funding consultancy firm the Fundsport Group have been working closely with the Club, the Welfare and all partners over the last year to ensure the project secured the funding and came to fruition.
Funded by the Premier League, The FA, and the Government via Sport England, the Football Foundation is the nation’s largest sports charity.
Launched in July 2000, the Foundation has so far supported around 8,000 community sports projects worth £945m.
Paul Thorogood, Chief Executive of the Football Foundation, said: “On behalf of everyone at the Football Foundation, I would like to congratulate and commend Welbeck FC and the Nottinghamshire County FA for all the hard work that has been invested into securing this grant.
“Since the Football Foundation was formed, in July 2000, we have supported 199 projects in Nottinghamshire worth £25m.”
“The Foundation is continuing to rebuild facilities at the grass roots level, enabling many more local people to gain access to regular football and other sports in their communities and improving the quality of their experience.
“This would not have been possible without the significant investment made by our funding partners, the Premier League, The FA and the Government.”