Plympton Academy delighted as works start on new all-weather pitch
Work has started on a brand new all-weather pitch at Plympton Academy, thanks to a grant from the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund. The new pitch is part of a larger project for the school, including the refurbishment of their multi-use games area.
The grant is enabling Plympton Academy to install a new third generation (3G) artificial grass pitch (AGP). This will support not only the Academy’s curriculum offerings for sport, but also enable a wide range of local grassroots clubs to benefit.
Other users will include partner clubs AFC Plympton and Chadlewood Miners FC. Additionally, Plymouth Argyle Community Trust plans to use the facility to deliver summer camps and other community outreach programmes. The facility will also play host to local small-sided leagues.
Once the pitch has been completed, it is expected that 12 new teams will be introduced across the two partner clubs, taking their collective total from 31 to 43. The pitch will also help to retain adult players by improving open-age and veteran football opportunities. This supports an expected 138% rise in football participation for those over the age of 26.
The club worked in partnership with the Devon FA to secure a £397,013 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 15,000 grants worth nearly £580m towards improving grassroots sport, which it has used to attract additional partnership funding of just under £800m – over £1.4bn of investment into the grassroots game.
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.
Teresa Lakeman, Business Director at Plympton Academy, said: “We are really excited to see this long awaited project get underway on site. The replacement of our old and tired MUGA alongside the installation of a brand new 3G pitch will help transform Academy sports facilities for our students. We are delighted to be able to work with the Football Foundation to deliver this new facility especially as it will also support grassroots sport in the area. Our existing facilities are widely used by local clubs and they are as keen as we are to see this new set of facilities finally in place.”
Paul Thorogood, Chief Executive of the Football Foundation, said: “It is great to see that works have officially started for Plympton Academy, thanks to a grant from the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund.
“Thanks to investment from the Premier League, The FA and Government, via Sport England, the Football Foundation continues to support the development of the grassroots game. This project in Plymouth is another fantastic example of its impact at the lowest levels of the sport.”