Date published: 15/03/2013
Rotherham’s MP has ‘championed’ improvements at a local park this week and formally accepted two cheques for funding that will provide a welcome boost for grassroots sport in the area.
Sarah Champion MP visited Barker’s Park to receive cheques from the Football Foundation and Sport England on behalf of Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council.
Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council worked in partnership with the Sheffield and Hallamshire FA to secure a £55,542 grant from the Football Foundation, the country’s largest sports charity, and a further £70,000 from Sport England to fund improvements to the existing outdated changing facilities at Barker’s Park.
In a double boost for sport in the area, another cheque from the Football Foundation for £39,000 was also presented for new pitch fencing at the Roughwood Road recreation ground, home to Greasbrough Youth Football Club, who have approximately 300 members with mini soccer teams through to adult teams.
The developments at Barker’s Park will provide high quality changing facilities for users, including showers and new toilet facilities as well as provision for people with disabilities. Local adult and junior teams will benefit from the improvements to the pavilion which will comprise of eight secure team changing rooms as well as a changing room for officials.
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.
Sarah Champion, MP for Rotherham, said: “It is fantastic news for Rotherham that both the Football Foundation and Sport England are supporting two of our community football pitches. The grants represent a real investment in our local infrastructure which will allow more people to enjoy the sport they love.”
Councillor Amy Rushforth, Cabinet Member for Culture and Tourism, said: “Together, these grants from the Football Foundation and Sport England will make a huge difference to the sporting lives of local footballers at both junior and senior level.
“Anyone playing at Barker's Park will no longer have to change in their car or at the side of the pitch and will also be able to take advantage of full shower and toilet facilities.”
Paul Thorogood, Chief Executive of the Football Foundation, said:“Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council has been extremely energetic and has worked tirelessly in partnership with the Sheffield and Hallamshire FA to secure this funding, and I am thrilled to see their hard work rewarded with this substantial Football Foundation grant.
“The Foundation is committed to supporting projects like this one in Rotherham and right across the country with money generously provided by the Premier League, The FA, the Government (via Sport England), who have been our core funders since 2000.”
Charles Johnston, Sport England Property Director, said: “We are delighted to be supporting the improvements to the facilities at Barker’s Park through our Inspired Facilities Olympic legacy fund. This lottery investment will help to ensure local people have a great place to play sport for decades to come.
“We have had such a fantastic response to Inspired Facilities that we have reached our target of making 1,000 grants a year early. I would encourage other local clubs to apply to this fund which can make a real difference to the sport on offer to local communities.”
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.
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