Project launched to bring new football facility to Stowmarket

A project has been launched to bring a new football facility to Stowmarket. Picture by Richard Blaxa

A project has been launched to bring a new football facility to Stowmarket. Picture by Richard Blaxall/Focus Images Ltd +44 7853 364624 23/01/2016 - Credit: Richard Blaxall/Focus Images Ltd

An exciting project has been launched by representatives in an attempt to bring new sports facilities to an ever-expanding Suffolk town.

Stowmarket Town Council, along with partners including Suffolk FA and the county council, are examining the possibility of providing a full size artificial football pitch in the town.

The site would also include car parking and changing facilities, if the project was to go ahead.

The project is part of the town council’s ‘place shaping agenda’ – which is seeking to provide more and better amenities for Stowmarket in response to the town’s rapid expansion.

Stowmarket Town Councillor Nick Gowrley said: “Stowmarket has some excellent sports clubs, many of which are looking to improve their facilities.

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“We are very fortunate to have the headquarters of Suffolk FA here in the town and believe that an effective partnership has been formed with Suffolk FA that can deliver a much-needed all weather football pitch for people of all ages.”

Mr Gowrley added that representatives were also examining options for other sports in the town.

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Suffolk FA Football Development Manager Nathan French said: “It has been identified through the local authority’s playing pitch strategy that there is a need to develop a full size 3G football turf pitch in and around Stowmarket.

“We are currently working with Stowmarket Town Council to explore a potential location and the cost for this exciting project.

“Once full details of the feasibility study have come back, we will have a greater understanding of the potential for a community football centre in the town.”

Mayor of Stowmarket, Barry Salmon said the project would be an “exciting prospect for the town” and added: “One of the things the town council has been very keen to do over last couple of years is to improve all sorts of sporting facilities in Stowmarket.”

Mr Salmon added the football pitch would be “top of the range” and added although there were a number of sports clubs in the town, there was a “dearth” of this sort of facility for football.

“As it (Stowmarket) has expanded, the facilities haven’t kept up as well as we had hoped,” he added.

“We see it as a very positive move for the town as well.

“We want to make sure it’s a community asset.”

Mr Salmon also stressed that they were looking to develop areas for other sports groups.

“What we’re keen to do as a town council is not to have something there for two years and then close down.

“Everything we do needs to be sustainable for the foreseeable future.”

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