Grassroots sport in Barwell received a significant boost following the news that Barwell Parish Council, in conjunction with AFC Barwell, have received a grant of £463,282 from the Football Foundation, the country’s largest sports charity.
The Council and club were presented with two giant cheques – one edible and one you’d probably prefer not to eat! A giant cake in the design of a Football Foundation cheque was made especially for the occasion.
The funding will allow AFC Barwell to build a new sports pavilion and a drainage scheme. The new sports pavilion will comprise of: four changing rooms, officials’ changing rooms, a community room and car parking for 40 vehicles.
Dating from the early 1960s, the current pavilion at AFC Barwell is outdated and no longer suitable for the volume of users it regularly serves. The quality of pitches has also resulted in a number of fixtures being lost during the winter months in recent seasons, due to waterlogged pitches and poor drainage.
The new facility is expected to entertain over 450 weekly users for football alone, with the site also being utilised for archery and rounders. The FA Charter Standard Community Club already boasts an impressive 20 teams, but has plans to expand to 30 over the next five years.
The club has a long standing history of grassroots football development and the opportunity to have a new changing facility will allow the club to not only retain their existing teams but also increase participation significantly.
The club worked in partnership with the Leicestershire County FA to secure a grant of £463,200 from the Football Foundation. Funded by the Premier League, The FA, and the Government (via Sport England), the Football Foundation is the country’s largest sports charity. Since it was launched in 2000, the Foundation has awarded around 8,000 grants worth more than £420m towards improving grassroots sport, which it has used to attract additional partnership funding of over £520m.
Richard Neale-Gardner, Chairman of Barwell Parish Council, said: “This is fantastic news for the Parish Council, AFC Barwell and the village as a whole. The success of AFC Barwell has been a credit to the village. Now their efforts in partnership with the Parish Council, have received a huge boost thanks to this grant from The Football Foundation.”
Paul Thorogood, Chief Executive of the Football Foundation, said: “I commend Barwell Parish Council, AFC Barwell and the Leicestershire FA for working tirelessly to secure this funding and I look forward to seeing the end result in the near future.
“This year is an exciting time for sport in this country and a tremendous opportunity to create a grassroots legacy. The hosting of the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games will inspire generations of people up and down the country to reap the rewards that sport has to offer. The Football Foundation is dedicated, with funding provided from the Premier League, The FA and government, to raising the standard of grassroots community sports facilities and to getting more people actively playing the national sport.”
For more information about the work the Football Foundation follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/FootballFoundtn.
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