UDC awards £150,000 grant for "world class" sports pitch project

Uttlesford District Council has awarded a grant of £150,000 to Saffron Walden Community Football Club (SWCFC) towards their project to deliver a 3G artificial grass pitch.

Construction of the new £1.1m pitch, at Saffron Walden County High School (SWCHS), will commence in the Easter holidays and is scheduled to be completed in August.

The decision to support the project was agreed unanimously by the council's Cabinet at its latest meeting on 9 February.

Cllr Alexander Armstrong, Portfolio Holder for Sports, said: "We are delighted to be able to provide the funds needed to enable the 3G pitch build to get underway.

"This is an exciting project for the community and one that will be beneficial to many people of all ages for years to come."

Matt Clare, SWCFC Secretary, said: "This incredible UDC grant is the final piece in the jigsaw and enables us to get started on the delivery of this desperately needed facility right away.

"This is a genuine community project and our partnership with SWCHS will ensure that hundreds of girls and boys will get to play football on a world class pitch every week.

"We're so grateful to UDC for backing the project with this very significant grant award. We can't wait to get started."

The construction work will be undertaken by Tiger Turf and McArdle Sport Tec, specialist contractors approved by the Football Foundation who are providing the majority of the funding. The pitch will be tested before handover to ensure that it meets the exacting FA/FIFA standards.

The Uttlesford District Council grant for the 3G project is part of a wider £450,000 grants programme the council intends to make available over three years to support larger-scale sports projects across the district. The purpose is to enable projects that increase community involvement and participation. Details of the 2021/22 scheme will be announced shortly.

17 February 2021