Date published: 05/12/2013
Wellingborough Old Grammarians have been awarded a £74,997 grant from the Football Foundation, the country’s largest sports charity, which will help enhance their provision of youth football.
Work has now commenced on the project and the funding will allow the flourishing sports and social club to make grass pitch improvements to two acres of land at its Sywell Road Memorial Sportsfield site that will be dedicated to youth football.
The improved pitches, which will be maintained meticulously by the club, will complement the existing eight changing rooms and three full-sized grass pitches that the site already offers and hopefully, weather permitting, the pitches should be available by next season.
It is hoped the £99,997 project will address the shortage of small sided, 9x9 facilities in the area. This format of the game applies to children aged from Under-11s to Under-13s: this is a vital step in the development of players’ skills, and a pivotal stage for inspiring and maintaining the interest of individuals in physical activity.
The club worked in partnership with the Northamptonshire FA to secure the £74,997 grant from the Football Foundation towards the project. 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 9,600 grants worth more than £412m towards improving grassroots sport, which it has used to attract additional partnership funding of over £565m.
Across the whole of Northamptonshire, the Foundation has awarded 91 grants worth over £5m towards grassroots sports projects worth £10m.
John Billing, Chairman of the Old Grammarians Sports Field Committee, said: “The funding received has been a huge boost to the Youth Football Section and will allow them to address the problem of the 9x9 facilities. Even with 28 acres of developed grassland, it was difficult to find a suitable area to play to the 9x9 format without encroaching on areas used by adults or other sports.
“In the endeavour to secure the grant we have received considerable help from the Borough Council and the Northamptonshire FA, who have guided us through the process.
“From little acorns of fund raising through sponsored walks etc., we were able to accumulate sufficient funds to consider match funding a more expansive project. With the Football Foundation scheme, Build the Game, offering generous incentives for grants the idea was developed and eventually grew into a complete project. While the application procedure is very thorough, it is fair and robust and the Football Foundation can be proud that it has helped to make a significant improvement to the provision of grassroots football.”
Paul Thorogood, Chief Executive of the Football Foundation, said: “I am delighted that a Football Foundation grant of £74,997 will enable the Wellingborough Old Grammarians Association to develop the facilities at Sywell Road, which will allow them to expand their provision of youth and disability football. In partnership with the Northants FA, Wellingborough Old Grammarians have worked extremely hard to secure this funding from the Football Foundation.”
“Since 2000 our funding partners, the Premier League, The FA and the Government, via Sport England, have generously provided the investment to improve facilities throughout the country, just like this one in Wellingborough.”
If you live in or around Wellingborough, and would like to no more about the youth set up at Wellingborough Old Grammarians, please visit www.wellingborough-ogs.org.
For more information about the work the Football Foundation is doing all over the country visit www.footballfoundation.org.uk or follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/FootballFoundtn.