Football in Croydon could get a huge boost if council plans to build two new state-of-the-art soccer-hub facilities can be realised.
After Sport England and the Football Association last year invited local authorities to bid for their new ‘Parklife’ project, Croydon submitted a successful initial application for support.
As a result the council now has funding to work on a feasibility study that could see a multi-million-pound investment into modern football facilities at both Purley Way Playing Fields and Ashburton Playing Fields.
Parklife – a five-year commitment to build many multi-pitch hubs across towns and cities in England – creates sustainable community football facilities in order to raise playing standards and provide more opportunities for everyone to enjoy the game. The £200m programme receives investment from The FA alongside the government, the Premier League and local partners. It is delivered nationally by the Football Foundation.
If feasibility work proves positive and planning permission is granted Croydon could potentially secure around £5m from the Premier League, Sport England and the Greater London Authority. The remainder of the costs would be funded locally.
“This is a wonderful opportunity and sits really well alongside our new leisure operator Greenwich Leisure and the transformation of our leisure offer across the borough next year. If it goes ahead many more people would have access to high quality playing facilities at these sites, and we’d ensure there was a focus on getting more women, people with disabilities, and older players involved in regular training sessions and league matches. Boosting sport participation is great for bringing communities together, as well, of course, as having health benefits.”
Councillor Timothy Godfrey, cabinet member for culture, leisure and sport
Three local leagues and 26 Croydon football clubs have already been spoken to for their thoughts, and work is being carried out in early-2018 to develop full plans for the facilities.
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