Exciting scheme would provide high quality football facilities
Page last updated at 05 July 2017 at 08:17
Eastleigh Borough Council and Southampton City Council have embarked on a journey to develop FA Parklife Football Hubs across their respective authorities.
The Parklife programme was introduced in 2016, alongside the Premier League and Sport England, to help address the issue of poor pitch quality in grassroots football by increasing the number of 3G artificial pitches, facilities and participation programmes available across the country.
A new housing development on Chestnut Avenue in Eastleigh will see a significant mitigation package realised, following the loss of Stoneham Park, and an opportunity to secure further investment through the Parklife capital scheme in order to develop the first hub in both the portfolio and South East region, at the Monks Brook playing fields site on Stoneham Lane, Eastleigh.
The Monks Brook site is subject to a planning application in the coming months, which will consist of three full-size floodlit 3G facilities, together with associated changing and parking facilities and will become home to the Eastleigh & District Mini Soccer League.
Eastleigh’s Cabinet Lead for Wellbeing, Cllr Alan Broadhurst, said: ”This is a really exciting scheme that will provide high quality football facilities for local people and also replace the loss of pitches as a result of the new Stoneham development. It’s fantastic that this national scheme will provide a regional facility in our borough to help inspire and train future generations of footballers.”
Cllr Satvir Kaur, Cabinet Member for Communities, Culture & Leisure at Southampton City Council, said: “We have an aspiration to get as many people as possible active in our communities. As national leaders in Parkrun, hosting great sporting events like the ABP Marathon and with plans to redevelop Southampton’s Sport Centre, here in Southampton we value and support growing sport both at grassroots and professional level.
“We work hard to secure investment into physical activity and it is promising to see the progress made in Stoneham Lane. Improving the quality of pitches and football facilities in and around the city will help us deliver our widening participation objectives.”
Mark Abrahams, Southampton Football Club’s Director of Commercial & Community Partnerships, said: “Southampton Football Club and Saints Foundation are delighted to support the Parklife programme in Southampton and Eastleigh. The development of Football Hubs across the two local authority areas will significantly increase the number of pitches available locally and ensure there are high quality facilities supporting the growth of the game for many years to come.”
Hampshire FA’s Chief Executive, Neil Cassar, said: “The Parklife Programme is an exciting opportunity to transform the football landscape within Southampton and Eastleigh. The site on Stoneham Lane will address issues we currently have on capacity for youth football and the overall quality of pitches. We will continue to work with partners in order to deliver the hubs that are currently in development as part of a drive to ensure football is sustainable in this area.”
For further information, please contact Danny Lynch via: danny.lynch@TheFA.com or 07983 961 957
Parklife is a capital funding programme being rolled out across 30 local authorities throughout the country. Funding for the scheme comes from the Premier League, The FA and DCMS through Sport England. The first Parklife Football Hub in the country opened in Sheffield in 2016.
For further information, please refer to the Sport England website.