Date published: 25/07/2013
Grassroots sport in Tameside received a significant boost yesterday following the opening of a brand new clubhouse and third generation (3G) artificial grass pitch, funded by the Football Foundation, the country’s largest sports charity.
The new facilities will allow the Centre to continue its development of grassroots football for Droylsden Juniors FC and the young people of the local community for many years to come, whilst creating a range of other sporting opportunities that the previous facilities were unable to offer.
The brand new clubhouse boasts a training room, refreshment area, meeting space, and office accommodation as well as four accessible, dual-gender changing rooms. The floodlights, on-site parking and all-weather playing surface on the new 3G artificial grass pitch will also allow for a safer and more enjoyable playing environment throughout the year.
The Droylsden Youth Centre worked in partnership with Manchester FA to secure a £864,679 grant from the Football Foundation. As the umbrella organisation for Droylsden Youth FC, the Centre has also previously been awarded a club development grant of £7,408 by the Foundation in order to develop new teams and a £300 Foundation grant, as part of The FA’s Respect programme to support responsible, positive behaviour amongst players and spectators.
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. Across Manchester, the Football Foundation has awarded 78 grants worth £12m towards grassroots sports projects worth £27m.
Councillor Kieran Quinn, Executive Leader of Tameside Council, said: “Droylsden Youth Centre, and indeed Droylsden Juniors, do a tremendous amount for the area. Thousands of young people have benefited from their efforts, most notably Nicky Butt who went on to play for Manchester United and England.
“I and the other Droylsden members have worked hard with Alan Bradbury and his team, and I am delighted that Tameside Council has been able to help make this exciting project a reality. The new facility will allow the good work to continue. It is a million miles from the old building. I would also like to thank the Football Foundation for their valued support.”
Alan Bradbury MBE, Chief Executive Officer at Droylsden Youth Centre, said: “Without the financial support of the Football Foundation we would not have been able to get the scheme off the ground. What we have achieved in creating this complex will be a valuable resource for the local community for generations to come.”
Paul Thorogood, Chief Executive of the Football Foundation, said: “It is so rewarding to see this new facility completed and ready for use by the local community. Alongside the Manchester County FA, Droylsden Youth Centre has worked extremely hard to ensure this project has come to fruition and deserve great credit for its endeavours.
“There is a very strong correlation between the quality of sports facilities that are available at the community, grassroots level and healthy participation levels. The better the quality of sports facilities, the more likely people will enjoy the experience of playing sport for the love of doing so and will, therefore, be more likely to remain involved in regular sport. This can only be good for the general health of the nation as a whole.
“This project in Droylsden is a wonderful example of what the Football Foundation is doing right across the country. Foundation investment is helping to transform the national inventory of facilities that supports the grassroots game in this country, and thanks must go to our funding partners, the Premier League, The FA, and the Government (via Sport England) for their crucial and generous financial support, without which none of this would be possible.”