Pudsey Juniors Football Club have secured a grant from the Football Foundation of £182,527 towards the pitch improvement works at Queens Park.
The project includes improving three youth and junior football pitches – which currently sit on a slope – and a 12-month maintenance programme. It will also provide a new modular unit to consist of a kitchen area and toilet, two metal storage containers and portable goalposts and a post and rail fence with three-metre wide gate.
Contractors will by starting very soon by spraying off the grassed area where the pitches are going to be improved in readiness for the groundworks to commence. The area will be fenced off whilst the works are taking place and will allow the grass to establish.
Ian Dent chairman of Pudsey Juniors said:
“This is fantastic news, we are keen to get things moving as quickly as possible ready for the start of the 2023/24 football season.
“We have been working for many years to improve facilities at Queens Park for the club to use and I’m looking forward to seeing the project completed.”
The grant is in addition to the club’s own contribution and section 106 money, which is paid to Leeds City Council as a planning condition for community improvements.
The club has been working closely with Leeds City Council and local councillors on the improvements. Cllr Simon Seary (Cons, Pudsey) said: “I’m extremely proud to have been able to work closely with Pudsey Juniors. This will help deliver the much-needed improvements to a large section of Queens Park, which will be dedicated to junior football.”
A council report published last week says the total cost of the project is £192,901.80, with Pudsey Juniors putting in £10,374.80. A contract was awarded to Cleveland Land Services for the pitch improvement works and 12-month maintenance programme at Queens Park.
The report added: “The project will make a huge difference to local junior football through the pitch improvement work, which will greatly enhance the quality of the grass pitches in Queens Park. This will reduce the number of matches being postponed due to having better quality pitches and better drainage, along with an enhanced maintenance programme.
“The welfare unit will enable Pudsey Juniors to generate income for the club by providing refreshments for their players and spectators and will provide toilet facilities to ensure it meets safeguarding and equality standards.”
The aim is for the groundworks to start this month, which should take around five to six weeks to complete. However, given the various works required and the time it will take for the newly developed pitches to become fully established following seeding works, the pitches are unlikely to be ready until summer 2023.
The project will benefit over 150 young people aged five to 18 years from Pudsey and the surrounding areas.
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