New Fordley Juniors FC’s new state-of-the-art £245,000 changing room pavilion was officially opened at the club’s Annitsford Sports Ground home recently. The project was made possible thanks to a £74,558 grant from the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund, which is delivered by the Football Foundation. The Fund provides grants towards developing new or refurbished grassroots football facilities. 

The grant from the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund has enabled New Fordley JFC, whose previous changing facilities had been an old shipping container, to construct a new changing room pavilion comprising: two large changing rooms, two officials rooms, community room with kitchen, spectator toilets and plant storage. 

The new facility will be used heavily by New Fordley JFC’s nine teams and the local community in Annitsford. For several years the Annitsford Sports Ground has been under-utilised and had fallen into disrepair. However, the new facility will help New Fordley JFC to form four new teams over the coming years and become a highly important asset for sport in North Tyneside. 

The club worked in partnership with the Northumberland FA to secure a £74,558 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 £510m towards improving grassroots sport, which it has used to attract additional partnership funding of over £719m – over £1.2bn of investment into the grassroots game. 

Since 2000 the Football Foundation Funding Partners’ investment has provided 96 grants worth £11m towards grassroots sports projects worth over £22m across the whole of Northumberland. 

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. 

Many of the new state-of-the-art facilities will serve to strengthen the connection between professional football clubs and their local communities, particularly in the most deprived areas of the country, through the professional clubs’ community trusts’ outreach work. 

The club also received £50,000 from Sport England’s Inspired Facilities fund towards the cost of the new changing room pavilion. To date the fund has helped more than 1,800 local sports projects across the country. 

Joanne Williams, Secretary, New Fordley JFC, said: “After a lot of hard work we have finally achieved the completion of Phase Two of works on Annitsford Welfare. We would like to thank the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund, Sport England, Northumberland FA, Mr Mulhatra, owner of Heatherfields care home, North Tyneside Council and especially our local MPs Jim Allen, Ray Glindon and Ann Arkle.

“We would also like to thank Michael Main of M W Main Building Contactors for being in charge of the build from start to finish and for being so patient throughout all the payment stages. Local businessman Owen Pugh, P C Forklift services, Deleval Plant Hire, Johnstone Paints, Colin Wilson and all other locals who have pulled together as a community to help this project succeed.” 

Paul Thorogood, Chief Executive of the Football Foundation, added: “The Football Foundation is responsible for managing and delivering the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund, which is funded by the Premier League, The FA and the Government, via Sport England. This new changing room pavilion is an example of the positive impact that this funding is having on our grassroots game. First-class facilities like this are crucial to creating more opportunities for local people to enjoy regular sport. 

“Aided by the Northumberland FA, the New Fordley JFC committee deserve huge credit for taking a vision and turning it into a reality, using funding provided by the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund. Sport has the power to make a positive impact on the health of communities and this wonderful new facility will improve the sporting experience of local people and encourage them to be more active.”