Football Foundation investment and hard work of volunteers pays off as Broughton pitches transformed
Thanks to investment from the Premier League, The FA and Government’s Football Foundation and hard work from volunteers at the Broughton Community and Sports Association (BCSA), community access to quality grassroots sports facilities in the area has been transformed.
The Phil Grundy Sports and Community Centre – which is owned by the Council and maintained by local charity, BCSA – is a hub for sport in Broughton, providing opportunities for the local community, particularly the younger generation, to get active and have fun.
However, when BCSA took over the maintenance of the grass pitches at the site, they were in a serious state of disrepair. The ground suffered from a serious chafer grub issue which resulted in severe grass damage, leaving most of the surface was unplayable.
With the help of a £19,000 grant, BCSA were able to purchase much needed grass pitch maintenance machinery to help the volunteer grounds team, headed up Chair of Trustees, Sean Clixby, maintain their grass pitches.
Then in 2020, BCSA secured a Grass Pitch Maintenance Fund grant worth £46,000 to support the improvement and upkeep of their grass pitches.
In addition to this, through PitchPower – the Football Foundation’s free grass pitch inspection web app – BCSA were able to access advice from experts at the Grounds Management Association (GMA).
Thanks to this vital advice and funding, BCSA transformed their grass pitches from a rating from ‘poor’ to ‘good’ in just over a year – an achievement which has helped earn them both Lincolnshire FA’s and the GMA's Volunteer Grounds Team of the Year award 2022.
And it’s not just football that has benefitted. Broughton Cricket Club are also based at the site and run popular junior, adult and women & girls programmes, which are expanding rapidly. Both the football and cricket clubs work together to maintain the grass pitches.
Sean Clixby, Chair of Trustees at BCSA, said:
“Before working with the Football Foundation, we had one area that we could fit one 5-a-side pitch and that was it. The rest wasn’t playable.
“With massive input from the Football Foundation, we were able to get advice on what needed to be done, skill ourselves up and get the machinery equipment we needed to bring this field up the state it is now.
Without a doubt, I recommend clubs sign up to PitchPower. It’s free and it opens up so many doors, it’s really a no brainer.”
Secretary of the local grassroots football club based at the site, Broughton Ravers Junior Football Club, Mark Fox, said:
“To see the Premier League, The FA and the Government working together on this project is a massive boost.
“Thanks to the transformation of our grass pitches, we now have 175 players, from under-15s all the way down to under-7s. We’ve also now got girls’ teams and looking to enter them into local leagues from next season.”
Robert Sullivan, CEO of the Football Foundation, said:
“The Football Foundation is working closely with our partners – the Premier League, The FA and Government through Sport England – to transform the quality of grass pitches across the country.
“The quality facilities here at are a shining example of the power of pitches to transform lives and communities through offering more opportunities for people to play their favourite sports and get active.
“We’re committed to hitting our target of reaching 20,000 'good' quality grass pitches like the ones here by 2030, with the first 7,000 to be reached by 2024.”
To start your grass pitch transformation, visit the Football Foundation website here.