Date published: 08/09/2015
Philip Davies, MP for Shipley, and Billy Clarke, Bradford City FC striker, marked the official opening of Salts Juniors FC’s new £350,000 changing pavilion recently (Saturday 5 September). The project was made possible thanks to a £226,880 grant from the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund, which provides grants towards developing new or refurbished grassroots football facilities, and £50,000 from the Football Stadia Improvement Fund (FSIF).
Prior to this funding, the existing changing facilities could not accommodate existing team numbers, nor did it allow for any future growth. Without the funding from the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund, the changing facilities were likely to have been condemned.
The new changing room houses two junior and two senior team changing rooms, all with toilets and showers. There are two dedicated officials' changing rooms, again with their own toilet and shower facilities. There is also wheelchair accessible spectator toilets and a fully equipped kitchen and also a plant room.
Salts Juniors FC and adult section, Salts FC, operate more teams than any other club in West Riding and have received several accolades, including the 2012 Regional Community Club of the Year award. The junior and adult sections currently run 42 teams in total, which contain 400 junior players and over 100 adult members.
The club worked in partnership with the West Riding County FA to secure a £226,880 grant from the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund.
The Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund 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 13,000 grants worth more than £530m towards improving grassroots sport, which it has used to attract additional partnership funding of over £740m – over £1.3bn of investment into the grassroots game.
Since 2000 the Football Foundation Funding Partners’ investment has provided 121 grants worth £17.6m towards grassroots sports projects worth over £36.2m across the whole of West Riding.
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.
Philip Davis, MP for Shipley, said: "I was delighted to be invited to the opening of this fantastic changing facility at Salts. I appreciate the hard work of individuals who give up their time to make these things happen. The financial support from the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund, alongside the FSIF, through the Football Foundation and fund raising efforts from the club, have created an investment for the future for grassroots football."
Sally Creegan, Chairman, Salts Juniors and Salts FC, said: “These new changing rooms will increase participation in football and we are grateful to the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund, as well as the Football Foundation and the FSIF for their help and support in providing these excellent facilities for the future of local football."
Peter McCormick OBE, Chairman of the Football Stadia Improvement Fund, said: “This new changing pavilion at Salts Juniors Football Club is a fitting addition to the real grass pitch already used extensively at the site.
“Players and officials will now be able to change in a safe and comfortable environment, with excellent facilities on offer for all spectators, too. This investment will only help the club to grow and was made possible thanks to the generous funding from the Premier League, through the FSIF.”
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 Salts Juniors and Salts FC to upgrade their changing facilities. 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 £1.3bn, 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 Saltaire 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 if it and to stay healthy.”
Photos courtesy of Alex Daniel Photography.
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