Date published: 19/10/2012
A new state-of-the-art playing surface funded by the Football Foundation has officially opened in Kesgrave, Suffolk.
TV presenter and Football Foundation ambassador, Georgie Bingham, who was the main TV anchor for the 2012 Paralympic games, opened the new pitch at Kesgrave High School.
The facility is a full size football third generation (3G) artificial grass pitch that can easily be divided into three training areas or pitches for different forms of match play. The opening will enable the pupils of Kesgrave High School and many local youth and adult football teams to train and play on a quality facility every week.
Georgie, Sky News and talkSport presenter, visited the school in July to present the cheque to the school. She said: “It is fantastic to come back to Kesgrave High School to see the impact of the funding from the Football Foundation; last time I was here just a few months ago this was just a field!
“State-of-the-art facilities, like this pitch at Kesgrave High School, are important not just for schools, but for local clubs and communities too. Quality facilities encourage more people to get involved in the game at the grassroots level.
“Dreams are made on the football pitch at grassroots level. Grassroots is where people develop their love for the game. I really believe that an England star of the future will learn his or her trade on this pitch.”
The club worked in partnership with the Suffolk FA to secure a £306,216 grant from the Football Foundation. Funded by the Premier League, The FA, and the Government (via Sport England), the Football Foundation is the country’s largest sports charity. Since the Foundation was set up in 2000 it has worked closely with the Suffolk FA to support 135 grassroots sports projects across the county with grants worth £5.9m. These grants have attracted further partnership funding of £8.6m into the area’s grassroots.
Nigel Burgoyne, Head Teacher of Kesgrave High School, said: “This is a fantastic new facility that will greatly enhance the opportunities for training and playing football, for both pupils at the school and a wide range of local football club teams.
“It will also provide a facility for Suffolk FA training programmes. The school in particular is very grateful for the support of the Football Foundation.”
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 Suffolk FA, Kesgrave High School 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 Kesgrave 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.”
For more information about the work the Football Foundation visit www.footballfoundation.org.uk or follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/FootballFoundtn.
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