[Skip to content]

Text size
Football Foundation
Search our Site
Funding Partners
*
E-ACT Academy delighted as Mayor unveils new all-weather pitch in Walsall

E-ACT Academy delighted as Mayor unveils new all-weather pitch in Walsall

Date published: 21/07/2017
E-ACT Academy delighted as Mayor unveils new all-weather pitch in Walsall

The Mayor of Walsall, Cllr. Marco Longhi, officially opened the West Walsall E-ACT Academy’s brand new all-weather pitch yesterday (Wednesday 19 July). The project was made possible by a grant from the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund, which is delivered by the Football Foundation.

The grant has enabled West Walsall E-ACT Academy to upgrade their original playing field to a state-of-the-art third generation (3G) artificial grass pitch (AGP). The improved surface and added floodlights mean that the pitch can be used all-year-round, even through the dark winter months.

The school hopes that the new pitch will benefit its students, major stakeholders and the local community. Other users will include partner club Walsall Ladies FC.

The new all-weather pitch is expected to help Walsall Ladies FC increase their number of teams from six to 11. A further 19 local teams will also use the facility every week. This is expected to boost football participation across all age-groups by 229% at the pitch and overall sport participation by 59%.

West Walsall Academy worked alongside the Staffordshire FA and the Football Foundation to compile a five-year Football Development Plan, which is a vision of how sport will be played on site with an emphasis on increasing participation.

The club worked in partnership with the Staffordshire FA to secure a £519,464 grant from the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund.

The Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund provides grants towards developing new or refurbished grassroots football facilities. It is funded by the Premier League, The FA, and the Government, via Sport England. It is delivered by the Football Foundation, the country’s largest sports charity. Since it was launched in 2000, the Foundation has awarded around 15,000 grants worth nearly £580m towards improving grassroots sport, which it has used to attract additional partnership funding of just under £800m – over £1.4bn of investment into the grassroots game.

Since 2000, the Football Foundation Funding Partners’ investment has provided 255 grants worth £17.8m towards grassroots sports projects worth over £34.2m across the whole of Staffordshire.

By providing more high-quality facilities, coupled with coaching at the appropriate age group, the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund aims to improve the experience for regular players as well as attracting new players to the game. Many of the new state-of-the-art facilities will serve to strengthen the connection between professional football clubs and their local communities, particularly in the most deprived areas of the country, through the professional clubs’ community trusts’ outreach work.

Mr Riaz, Headteacher of the West Walsall E-ACT Academy said: “We are delighted to have received the investment from the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund, delivered by the Football Foundation, which has enabled the new 3G pitch to be available to our local community.

“We already have many community clubs booked to use the pitch, which not only will enable young talent to develop, but will also provide a space where our community can come together and share their sporting passions.”

Valerie Vaz, MP for Walsall South, said: “I am delighted that West Walsall E-ACT Academy now has a new full-size floodlit all-weather pitch, funded by a £519,464 grant delivered by the Football Foundation.

“This is an excellent addition to the school’s sports facilities which will include a sports hall, indoor swimming pool, gymnasium, astro-turf and tennis courts.

“The new 3G pitch will allow students to participate in sport throughout the year, irrespective of the weather. I hope that this will encourage more girls and boys to engage with sport, which will help their physical health, mental well-being and skillset.”

Paul Thorogood, Chief Executive of the Football Foundation, said: “I am delighted that a grant from the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund has enabled the West Walsall E-ACT Academy to upgrade their playing fields to a brand new all-weather pitch. This development will provide a real boost to sport in the local area.

“Since 2000, the Football Foundation has supported grassroots projects worth more than £1.4bn, investing into areas where the need is greatest and where it will have the biggest impact in terms of getting more people playing football and a wide range of other sports. 

“With this funding, provided by the Premier League, The FA and the Government, through Sport England, we are helping to improve community sports facilities across the country and thereby the playing experience of those who take part. This latest project in Walsall is the latest addition to the inventory of modern community sports sites we are developing that cater for the needs of local people who want to play sport purely for the love of it and to stay healthy.”

ENDS 

For more information contact:

- Sian Haughton on 01922 720741 Ext: 245 or sian.haughton@e-act.org.uk
- Sophie Huby on 0345 345 4555 Ext: 4292 or sophie.huby@footballfoundation.org.uk


Share this page


Quote

“We already have many community clubs booked to use the pitch, which not only will enable young talent to develop, but will also provide a space where our community can come together and share their sporting passions.”

Mr Riaz, Headmaster of the West Walsall E-Act Academy

Top Corner

Top Corner is the official e-newsletter of the Football Foundation.

Each issue is packed with news and features from the grassroots of the game that we love.

Sign up to Top Corner today!