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Fenland Local Football Facility Plan

June 2019

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Executive summary

In summary, the LFFP for Fenland identifies opportunities to accurately target investment in football facilities across the local area.

The national funding partners have significantly increased investment to accelerate efforts to deliver more and better football facilities for the grassroots game and this plan proposes a programme of 11 priority projects for potential investment that will transform local football facilities, including 3G FTPs, improved grass pitches, changing rooms/ pavilions/clubhouses and small sided facilities.

This LFFP will be the go-to document for football facility investment in Fenland. It does not however, guarantee the success of future funding applications; each priority project identified will still have to follow an application process to show how it will deliver key participation outcomes, be a good quality, sustainable facility and demonstrate suitable match-funding.

This plan has identified the following projects:

2 Full size 3G FTPs
13 Improved grass pitches
2 Changing rooms / pavilions/ clubhouses
4 Small sided facilities

Next steps

When each priority project is in a position to proceed, pre-application support will be provided by the Football Foundation and the Cambridgeshire County FA. Local stakeholders are strongly encouraged to maintain positive partnerships with these organisations.

Successful LFFP delivery will require the collective effort of all local partners. It is recommended that the important work undertaken by local partners to produce this plan continues in the form of on-going dialogue and collaborative work to deliver priority projects and review progress.

This plan will be updated periodically to ensure it remains up to date. If you have a project/opportunity that was not identified at the time of writing this plan please contact Cambridgeshire County FA.

2019 Exec summary
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“Within 10 years, we aim to deliver great facilities wherever they're needed”

Introduction

This is the Local Football Facility Plan (LFFP) for Fenland. It was prepared by Knight, Kavanagh and Page (KKP) with support from local partners, including:

  • Cambridgeshire County FA
  • Fenland District Council
  • Football Foundation
  • Living Sport
  • Sport England

What is the goal?

Every local area in the Country will have a LFFP to enable investment in football facilities to be accurately targeted.

Who is behind this?

The Football Association, the Premier League and Sport England (on behalf of Government). This partnership finances the National Football Facility Strategy (NFFS) and commissions the Football Foundation to deliver it.

What is the purpose of this plan?

The national funding partners have significantly increased investment to accelerate efforts to deliver more and better football facilities for the grassroots game. The purpose of this plan is to identify the priority projects for potential investment in Fenland.

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Why invest in football facilities?

As the nation’s most popular team sport, football has the power to contribute positively to vital social outcomes and health priorities. To maximise this power, facilities have to be welcoming environments to attract first-time users and repeat visits, whether for informal, recreational or competitive football.


Research clearly and continually demonstrates the positive impact high-quality football facilities, in the right locations, can have on participation and enjoyment. Latent demand exists, but facility quantity and quality has to ‘step up’ if football is to reach out to everyone.

How are we going to do it?

£1.3billion has been spent by football and Government since 2000 to enhance existing football facilities and build new ones. However, more is needed if football and Government’s shared objectives for participation, individual well-being and community cohesion are to be achieved.


Nationally, direct investment will be increased – initially to £69 million per annum from football and Government (a 15% increase on recent years). Locally, the work has already started - this LFFP will guide the allocation of 90% of national funds and forge stronger partnerships with local stakeholders to develop key sites. This, together with local match-funding will deliver over one billion pounds of investment into football facilities over the next 10-years.

What are the priorities for investment?

This LFFP, with guidance from local partners, has developed a list of high level projects for potential investment. Each is aligned to the investment priorities set out in the National Football Facilities Strategy, which include:

  • 1,000 new 3G football turf pitches (FTPs): in a mix of sizes and settings, dependent upon local needs. All aimed at enhancing the quality of the playing experience.
  • 20,000 improved natural-turf pitches: to help address drop-off due to a poor playing experience.
  • 1,000 new changing pavilions / clubhouses: all linked to priority sites.
  • Small-sided facilities: to grow the small-sided game for teams & leagues, recreational and informal play.

What outcomes will be achieved?

The priority projects for potential investment identified in this plan will help develop a sustainable network of quality facilities to drive participation across all parts of the game. Central to this are five key success factors: quality, inclusivity, sustainability, engagement and usage. Each identified project takes account of these factors.

How should this plan be used?

This LFFP will, in effect, be the go-to document for football facility investment in Fenland.


Whilst it identifies priority projects for potential investment, it does not guarantee the success of future funding applications. Each project must still follow an application process to show how it will deliver key participation outcomes, become a quality and sustainable facility and demonstrate suitable match-funding.


When a project is in a position to proceed, the Football Foundation will determine a suitable timeframe to submit a grant application and pre-application support will be provided by Cambridgeshire County FA and the Football Foundation.

Set a 10-Year vision to transform local football facilities
Identify priority projects to be delivered
Act as an investment portfolio for projects that require funding
Be updated on a regular basis

How should this plan NOT be used?

A LFFP is an investment portfolio of priority projects for potential investment - it is not a detailed demand and supply analysis of all pitch provision in a local area. It cannot be used as a replacement for a playing pitch strategy (PPS) and it will not be accepted as an evidence base for site change of use or disposal.


A LFFP will however build on available/existing local evidence and strategic plans and may adopt relevant actions from a PPS and/or complement these with additional investment priorities.

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Fenland

Local area

Fenland is in the East region.

The current population of the authority (ONS 2017 Mid-Year Estimate) is 100,776. This is expected to rise to 111,922 by 2039.

Fenland is a relatively deprived Authority; it is 5th out of 54 LAs in the region, and 47th out of 326 LAs nationally on the Indices of Multiple Deprivation (ONS).

Fenland's ethnic composition is primarily white (97%). This is higher than the national average (85.4%).

The proportion of Fenland’s population represented by the BAME community is 3%. This is below the national average (14.6%)

At 34%, levels of inactivity in Fenland are above both the national and regional average figure.

Demographics

  • 2018
    100,776 Current population
  • 2039
    111,922 Projected population
  • 5th most deprived out of 47 local authorities in the region
  • 54th most deprived out of 326 local authorities in England

Ethnicity data

  • Asian (1.13%)
  • Black (0.52%)
  • Mixed (0.95%)
  • Other (0.17%)
  • White (97.24%)
34%
25%
26%

% of people that are inactive

  • Fenland
  • Region
  • England

*ONS data and Sport England Active Lives Survey 2016/17

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Local partners

Local authority

The Fenland Local Plan vision (2015-2031) describes how the Council intends to 'maximise the potential of the area and deliver jobs, skills, dynamic town centres, vibrant villages, improved housing, and new infrastructure' whilst noting that 11,000 homes are planned to be built across the district by 2031.

Within the Plan, a policy described as 'Facilitating Health and Well-being of Fenland Residents' is presented; this includes the following objectives:

  • Promoting and facilitating healthy lifestyles.
  • Providing good access to health, leisure and recreation facilities.

The Authority PPS was adopted in 2016. The key findings and stated overarching priorities are that, overall, the majority of grass pitches in Fenland are of good quality, but that several of the larger multi-pitch sites do require some form of improvement. In addition, it was identified that there was a shortfall of between one and two full sized 3G FTPs .

County football association

Fenland is covered by the Cambridgeshire County FA. It provides governance for, and development support to, all aspects of local football including coaches, referees, volunteers, clubs and leagues; supporting football for all. The County FA has a designated facilities investment lead officer who works to ensure the right facilities are located in the right locations.

Football Foundation

The Regional Engagement Manager and Regional Technical Project Manager at the Football Foundation work collaboratively with the County FA to provide pre-application support to priority projects for potential investment.

Football Foundation Investment

12 Total grants
  • £2,768,143 Total project cost
  • £1,308,812 Total grant value
  • 12 Sites improved
  • 2 New 3G FTPs
  • 5 Changing rooms / pavilions
  • 21 Grass pitches improved

See Football Foundation website for more info (http://www.footballfoundation.org.uk/impact/where-our-money-goes)

Grant data above represents Football Foundation investment during the period 2000 - 2018.

Sport England

Has a network of planning managers who have a statutory role in the planning system to protect playing fields and provide consultation responses to planning applications relating to sporting facilities . They also play a key role in strategic planning for sports facilities, providing advice and support to local authorities to assess need for facilities in their local area.

Professional community club organisations (CCOs)

There is no active CCO in Fenland .

Local leisure operator

Freedom leisure is the leisure operator in Fenland. It currently runs several key sites including indoor sports centres at Whittlesey, Wisbech and March.

Local consultation

This has taken place with a broad and diverse set of community groups in Fenland. Nine individuals (representing eight local organisations) were spoken to. The agencies consulted include:

  • Fenland District Council
  • Freedom Leisure
  • Wisbech St Mary FC

(See Appendix B for full list of consultees)

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Local football

Clubs

There are over 91,000 community football teams in England, spread over an expansive network of clubs and leagues. Fenland District Council has a total of 170 teams, which is comparable to local areas of a similar size.

The FA is investing to support clubs both on and off the pitch which includes an aim to have a qualified FA coach with every youth team by 2020/21. In addition, it will support 1,000 clubs to create full player pathways from youth to adult teams and develop 150 community football hubs with male and female pathways, disability and recreational playing opportunities.

Over the last 10-years there has been a significant national increase in the number of large multi-team football clubs. In Fenland District, 4 clubs have more than 10 registered teams. These (based upon 2018-19 affiliation data) are:

  • Whittlesey Junior FC - 21 teams
  • March Academy FC - 20 teams
  • Wisbech St Mary FC - 19 teams
  • March Town Athletic FC - 14 teams

Affiliated Teams

170 Teams
  • 44 Adult male teams
  • 6 Adult female teams
  • 19 Youth male teams
  • 9 Youth female teams
  • 2 Disability teams
  • 54 Mini-soccer teams

The FA Whole Game System- season 2017/18

Leagues

Five leagues serve clubs and teams in Fenland District. They offer competitive opportunities for many different players, including women and girls, youth and adults . While there is no specific league opportunity for disability within Fenland, suitable provision is made in neighbouring Greater Cambridge. The largest of the leagues serving the local area (2018-19) include:

  • Cambridgeshire County League – 187 teams of which 22 teams are from Fenland - home and away
  • Cambridgeshire Girls & Women’s League – 168 teams of which 11 teams are from Fenland - home and away
  • Peterborough & District Junior Alliance League – 348 teams – home and away
  • Peterborough & District Youth League League – 67 teams – home and away
  • Peterborough & District Football League – 106 – home and away

The County FA reports significant cross boundary migration to/from Fenland District primarily due to teams migrating outwards to play in the leagues listed above

Disability football

There are 9.4 million people in England with a long-standing limiting disability, illness or condition which equates to 18% of the population – almost one in five. Football playing opportunities should be flexible, inclusive and accessible for everyone, whatever their level of ability. This could entail inclusion in mainstream activity or teams / sessions specifically for people with a disability.

In Fenland there are two football teams / sessions specifically for people with a disability. It is a priority of the County FA to sustain and grow this provision. For talented players the FA runs regional centres and England national squads.

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Women and girls

The FA has big ambitions for the female game and aims to double levels of participation by 2020. To achieve this requires a combined effort across four pathways: education, recreation, competition and talent.

Education environments have a huge impact on the first experience of football for young girls. This pathway can offer many opportunities for females of all ages to develop and grow a lifelong interest in football.

FA Wildcats girls football centres provide the first step on the recreational pathway, the programme provides girls aged 5-11 with regular opportunities to play football in a fun and engaging environment. Fenland District has three FA Wildcats girls football centres and the priority is to grow and sustain this activity.

At 15, Fenland District’s number of femalei teams is lower than local areas of a similar size. The County FA’s priority is to support existing clubs to grow and encourage more clubs to develop playing opportunities for females. The local girls’ league is the Cambridgeshire Women and Girls League in which matches are played on a home and away basis. It is expected to grow and sustain its provision in future years. The local adult female league is the Cambridgeshire Women and Girls League. It too plays matches on a home and away basis and is expected to grow and sustain its provision in future years.

For talented players, the most local FA Regional Talent Club (RTC) is Milton Keyes and Cambridgeshire FA ACC (East Cambs). Higher level talent pathway opportunities are also provided regionally and nationally by the FA, culminating in the England Women’s national squads. The most local Women’s Super League team is Arsenal which provides player pathway opportunities for gifted and talented female players and a spectator interest for fans.

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Small sided football

Many different types of small-sided football are played in England, from teams and leagues to recreational and informal. It is an established and important part of the modern game.

Small-sided teams and leagues are organised and competitive activities; typically with players registered to clubs and affiliated to leagues and their County FAs. Examples include Futsal and local small-sided leagues running at venues such as sports halls, 3G FTPs or small-sided 3G centres. A key local provider is Wisbech Soccer Six – 8 slots – Delivered by Thomas Clarkson.

Futsal is an exciting, fast-paced, small sided team game that is widely played across the world. Typically it is played on an indoor surface with hockey-sized goals and a size 4 football with reduced ball bounce. It is the FA’s aim to ensure that futsal is available across the country.

It is a priority for the County FA to grow futsal for all players.

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Small-sided teams and leagues are organised and competitive activities; typically with players registered to clubs and affiliated to leagues and their county FAs. Examples include futsal and local small-sided leagues running at venues such as sports halls, 3G FTPs or small-sided 3G centres.

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Recreational football

Recreational football is played where facilities are typically booked and there might be someone to help organise. Examples include FA Just Play sessions, walking football and casual pitch hire for small-sided match play.

There are currently one FA Just Play centre in Fenland District. Walking football sessions are delivered by a range of community organisation such as Wisbech Town, Elm Tree and New Vision and Cambridgeshire FA. Walking football and Just Play are County FA priorities for further growth.

Informal football

Informal football is played in local parks and green spaces – it is free, open access and often played spontaneously (normal clothing is worn). Common examples include a kick-about at a local park or on a multi-use games area (MUGA).

Summary

The key strengths of local football in Fenland include traditional football/league provision and it is recommended that this is sustained and also encouraged to grow further. However, gaps in provision do exist / there are aspects of football provision that lower than local authorities of a similar size, these include the recreational, small sided and futsal offer.

It is therefore recommended that the future football development priorities for Fenland are:

  1. Recreational opportunities
  2. Small sided/futsal offer

The facilities required to assist this are now set out in the Assets and opportunities section.

In addition, each priority project that progresses to a funding application via the Football Foundation will produce a detailed ‘site development plan’ specifying all football development activity, usage and key partner engagement.

Assets and opportunities

This section reviews existing football facility assets in Fenland. It identifies current issues and presents opportunities for improvements, including a list of priority projects for potential investment.

Local assets and opportunities have been reviewed in line with four investment priorities:

  • 3G FTPs
  • Improved grass pitches
  • Changing room pavilions / clubhouses
  • Small sided facilities

To ensure a consistent and high quality approach, each local area has been reviewed applying a standard approach, supplemented by input from consultation with local partners and stakeholder organisations.

While each investment priority is reviewed individually, it is understood that they can be inter-reliant; account is, thus, taken of these potential connections.

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3G football turf pitches (FTPs)

2019 assets and ops 2

Improved grass pitches

2019 assets and ops 3

Changing room pavilions/ clubhouses

2019 assets and ops 4

Small sided facilities

3G football turf pitches (FTPs)

3G FTPs are a high quality and indispensable part of modern football facilities; their impact cannot be underestimated. In recent years the industry has seen major innovations and improvements to artificial surfaces (and sports lighting). This has created playing surfaces that replicate a good standard natural turf pitch whilst significantly increasing levels of use (x20). All FTPs must have sports lighting to achieve this.

The high quality, consistent playing surface is the ideal environment to play the game and for young people to learn. With regular maintenance programmes, FTPs can be heavily used all year round with no decline in quality. They almost completely negate annoying fixture cancellations during winter months, helping football to be a key part of a regular physical activity habit.

High capacity levels offer a great opportunity to embrace all formats and engage all participants. A full-sized 3G caters for an average of 1,200 participants per week and is suitable for various location types. That means being fully inclusive to all sections of the community, with a particular focus on under-represented groups such as women and girls, people with a disability, BAME communities and people from lower socio-economic groups.

The way 3G FTPs are used is rapidly changing; current line-marking systems allow for match play across all formats of football (5v5, 7v7, 9v9 and 11v11). This enables significant levels of match-play to be transferred from grass to 3G.

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Assets and opportunities

Existing full-sized (11 v 11) 3G FTPs in Fenland are located at:

  • Cromwell Community College
  • Thomas Clarkson Academy

Fenland's one existing small sided 3G FTP is at Sir Harry Smith Community College (40m x 40m)

Cromwell Community College has submitted a planning application for the addition of a further full size 3G FTP. Whilst its design currently indicates that the facility would not be floodlit or fenced, if delivered this could offer additional community use at weekends.

The Fenland 2016 PPS indicates a shortfall of between one and two full size 3G FTPs based on 176 teams and that the March and Whittlesey sub-areas were priority locations for new provision. In addition to the shortfall of full size 3G FTPs, the pitch at Thomas Clarkson Academy will require replacement within the life of the LFFP.

Local consultation reveals that whilst the two current full size FTPs are both community accessible and FA registered (meaning they are quality checked and can be used for football match play), both offer only limited availability for additional community club bookings including match play and it is recommended that this is addressed.

The two current full sized 3G FTPs are located in the settlements of Wisbech (Thomas Clarkson Academy) and Chatteris (Cromwell College) respectively. There is a key provision gap in March which, alongside Wisbech is one of the two principal market towns in Fenland - it is recommended that this is addressed.

2 Current full sized 3G FTPs
2 Full sized 3G FTP projects
1 Small sided 3G FTP project

Priority projects

Three priority projects for potential investment are identified. In respect of the full-sized 3G FTP proposal at Neale Wade academy in March, It should be noted that should this proposal not prove feasible, alternative options for delivery in March could also be pursued at Estover playing fields and / or as a result of new housing development in the vicinity of Neale Wade academy.

Map data ©2021 Google

Priority 3G FTPs

1

Neale Wade Sports Centre

MARCH, PE15 9PX
Location

NEALE WADE SPORTS CENTRE WIMBLINGTON ROAD, MARCH, Cambridgeshire, PE15 9PX

Facilities
  • New Changing Pavilion (1)
  • New 11v11 Floodlit 3G FTP (1)
Owner

Education

Deliverability score

High (3/4)

NFFS outcome score

3.0/4

Overall score

75% (9.0/12)

Notes

Current users - March Town Athletic (14 affiliated teams()

Existing facilities- 2 full size grass pitch equivalents.

Rationale- Site identified in PPS as a potential location for new 3G FTP ( in addition to rather than replacing the existing sand based AGP). March identified as an area of shortfall in the PPS . Consultation with school confirmed potential demand from March soccer school.

Project Focus

Adult male; IMD / lower social economic groups; Mini-soccer; Small-sided teams and leagues; Youth female; Youth male

2

Wisbech St Mary

WISBECH, PE13 4SS
Location

WISBECH ST MARY SPORTS AND COMMUNITY CENTRE PLAYING FIELD BEECHINGS CLOSE, WISBECH ST. MARY, WISBECH, Cambridgeshire, PE13 4SS

Facilities
  • New 9v9 Floodlit 3G FTP (1)
Owner

Football club

Deliverability score

Medium (2/4)

NFFS outcome score

3.0/4

Overall score

67% (8.0/12)

Notes

Current facilities - 6 full size grass pitch equivalents

Existing Users - Wisbech St Mary (19 affiliated teams)

Rationale - Consultation with Wisbech St Mary, the largest club in Fenland (step 6) identified that they have limited access to 3G provision for training currently. Provision of a 9 v 9 FTP would , as identified in the PPS enable the club to grow additional age level teams.

Project Focus

Adult female; IMD / lower social economic groups; Mini-soccer; Small-sided teams and leagues; Youth female; Youth male

8

Thomas Clarkson Academy

WISBECH, PE13 2SE
Location

THOMAS CLARKSON ACADEMY CORPORATION ROAD, WISBECH, Cambridgeshire, PE13 2SE

Facilities
  • Refurbish existing 11v11 3G FTP (1)
Owner

Education

Deliverability score

Medium (2/4)

NFFS outcome score

2.4/4

Overall score

57% (6.8/12)

Notes

Current Users- Wisbech St Mary (19 affiliated teams)

Existing facilities- Full sized 3G FTP

Rationale- 3G FTP installed in 2005 and is stated in the PPS as being in need of resurface

Project Focus

Adult male; IMD / lower social economic groups; Mini-soccer; Youth female; Youth male

A project's overall score provides an indication of its potential outcomes and deliverability only (weighted twice as much towards the outcomes score). It does not impact the likelihood or level of any potential investment.

Improved grass pitches

Playing fields are one of the most important resources for sport in England. All football players should have the opportunity to play on good quality grass pitches. However, FA data shows that 63% of pitches in England are poor / low quality and one in six games is cancelled. As such, poor pitch quality is consistently cited as the number one issue for players.

The priority is, therefore, to sustainably improve grass pitch quality across all main pitch owners (local authorities, education establishments and clubs). However, the level of maintenance required to obtain good quality standards is regularly affected by restricted budgets and limited knowledge/ training. Compaction and grass coverage are two key causes of poor quality pitches. Both are commonly treated via a maintenance driven solution (and do not necessarily require costly drainage schemes).

Playing fields are also a valuable resources for informal play and open-access sites are encouraged but, for many, problems such as dog fouling and vandalism mean that they need to be protected with mitigation measures such as fencing.

The key challenge is to create a sustainable approach to provide good quality football pitches for the long term. Most local authorities (78%) intend to increase pitch hire fees in the future. However, the majority of players (63%) believe facilities are already expensive and some (16%) believe prices are prohibitive. A sustainable solution should, therefore, carefully balance pitch quality and affordability.

While the education sector (37%) and local authorities (32%) are still the principal asset owners of grass pitches, clubs / leagues own or maintain an increasing share (currently 25%). Assets and opportunities have been considered across each sector.

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Assets and opportunities

There are currently ten grass pitch sites in Fenland with three or more full-size pitch equivalents (or with fewer than three pitches but deemed to be of strategic importance). These contain 40 grass pitches. Of these, none are considered to have good quality pitches, seven are of standard quality and three of poor quality.

Local consultation shows common issues with poor quality and it is recommended that these are addressed.

Of the key pitch sites referenced above it was determined that four of these should be prioritised for improvement. This will result in quality improvements to 13 pitches:

Priority projects

10 Key grass pitch sites
4 Sites prioritised for improvement
13 Full size pitch equivalents at these sites

Four priority projects for potential investment are identified. Pitch quality rating was evidenced by the PPS and ratified by local partners. Prioritisation was based on a rationale of selecting sites with multiple pitches which are in the poorest condition.

3

Estover playing field

March, PE15 8SF
Location

ESTOVER PLAYING FIELD Estover Road, March, Cambridgeshire, PE15 8SF

Facilities
  • Natural grass pitch improvements (4)
Owner

Local Authority

Deliverability score

Low (1/4)

NFFS outcome score

2.0/4

Overall score

42% (5.0/12)

Notes

Current users - March academy (21 affiliated teams)

Existing facilities - 4 full size grass pitch equivalents

Rationale- Site identified in PPS as being of poor quality.

Project Focus

Adult male; Mini-soccer; Youth female; Youth male

4

Leverington Sports & Social Club

Leverington, PE13 3RA
Location

LEVERINGTON SPORTS AND SOCIAL CLUB Church Road, Leverington, Cambridgeshire, PE13 3RA

Facilities
  • Small sided informal (MUGA) (1)
  • Natural grass pitch improvements (3)
Owner

Other

Deliverability score

Medium (2/4)

NFFS outcome score

2.4/4

Overall score

56% (6.7/12)

Notes

Current users - Leverington Sports

Existing facilities - 3 full sized grass pitch equivalents

Rationale - Site identified in PPS as having poor quality grass pitches. FF engagement lead has also identified potential for conversion of existing tarmac tennis courts to a small sided football facility.

Project Focus

Adult male; Small-sided informal; Youth male

5

Gorefield Playing Field

Wisbech, PE13 4NE
Location

GOREFIELD PLAYING FIELD Wolf Lane, Gorefield, Wisbech, Cambridgeshire, PE13 4NE

Facilities
  • Natural grass pitch improvements (4)
Owner

Other

Deliverability score

Medium (2/4)

NFFS outcome score

2.0/4

Overall score

50% (6.0/12)

Notes

Current facilities -4 full size grass pitch equivalents

Existing users -Wisbech Town Acorns (8 affiliated teams)

Rationale - Site identified in PPS , and during consultation with the club as having poor quality pitches.

Project Focus

Adult male; Mini-soccer; Youth male

6

Chatteris Town FC

Chatteris, PE16 6HA
Location

CHATTERIS TOWN FC West Street, Chatteris, Cambridgeshire, PE16 6HA

Facilities
  • Natural grass pitch improvements (2)
Owner

Football club

Deliverability score

High (3/4)

NFFS outcome score

2.3/4

Overall score

63% (7.6/12)

Notes

Existing facilities - two full sized grass pitch equivalents

Current users - Chatteris Town FC (12 affiliated teams)

Rationale - Site identified during consultation with the club as requiring improvements to grass pitches. Chatteris Town (step 7) are a growing club with the potential to possibly accommodate 3G pitch provision in future.

Project Focus

Adult male; Mini-soccer; Youth male

A project's overall score provides an indication of its potential outcomes and deliverability only (weighted twice as much towards the outcomes score). It does not impact the likelihood or level of any potential investment.
Map data ©2021 Google

Priority grass pitch projects

Changing room pavilions / clubhouses

These can provide a number of different benefits. While the primary function is normally the provision of changing rooms to accommodate match-play and training (for players and officials), there can be equal value in facilities such as community and education rooms, catering facilities and spectator toilets.

Each project will take a progressive approach to pavilions and clubhouses (beyond the provision of changing rooms) and be open to new opportunities to engage the whole community. That means, creating environments that are welcoming to players, spectators, volunteers, officials and all sections of the community.

Such assets should support other investment priorities (e.g. 3G FTPs and grass pitches) and be located at sites that will have the greatest impact on local communities. To ensure this, focus is given to sites with three or more full-size pitch equivalents. However, as pitch quality is the number one priority for players this is prioritised before investment in changing room pavilions /clubhouses.

Clearly, facilities need to be well managed and maintained to keep them in a good state of repair. Consideration will be given to reviewing the best operator solution for key sites and the installation of revenue generating features such as catering facilities and community rooms. To achieve this, business plan support will be given to each priority project as it progresses to an application to the Football Foundation.

2019 clubhouse 1
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Assets and opportunities

Of the ten key grass pitch sites in Fenland with three or more full-size pitch equivalents (or with fewer than three but deemed to be of strategic importance), nine have suitable changing rooms and one requires improvement/replacement.

The new 3G FTP at Neale Wade Sports Centre will also require a new build pavilion.

9 Key sites have suitable changing rooms / pavilions / clubhouses
1 Require improvement / replacement
1 Have no facilities and require new builds

Priority projects

Two priority projects for potential investment are identified:

1

Neale Wade Sports Centre

MARCH, PE15 9PX
Location

NEALE WADE SPORTS CENTRE WIMBLINGTON ROAD, MARCH, Cambridgeshire, PE15 9PX

Facilities
  • New Changing Pavilion (1)
  • New 11v11 Floodlit 3G FTP (1)
Owner

Education

Deliverability score

High (3/4)

NFFS outcome score

3.0/4

Overall score

75% (9.0/12)

Notes

Current users - March Town Athletic (14 affiliated teams()

Existing facilities- 2 full size grass pitch equivalents.

Rationale- Site identified in PPS as a potential location for new 3G FTP ( in addition to rather than replacing the existing sand based AGP). March identified as an area of shortfall in the PPS . Consultation with school confirmed potential demand from March soccer school.

Project Focus

Adult male; IMD / lower social economic groups; Mini-soccer; Small-sided teams and leagues; Youth female; Youth male

7

Whittlesey FC

PETERBOROUGH, PE7 1PB
Location

WHITTLESEY JFC (OFF) STONALD ROAD, WHITTLESEY, PETERBOROUGH, Cambridgeshire, PE7 1PB

Facilities
  • New Changing Pavilion (1)
Owner

Football club

Deliverability score

High (3/4)

NFFS outcome score

2.6/4

Overall score

68% (8.1/12)

Notes

Current facilities -5 full sized grass pitch equivalents


Existing users - Whittlesey FC


Rationale - Site identified during consultation with the club as requiring improvements to / additional changing facilities. Club have been in consultation with the FF engagement lead

Project Focus

Adult male; IMD / lower social economic groups; Mini-soccer; Youth male

A project's overall score provides an indication of its potential outcomes and deliverability only (weighted twice as much towards the outcomes score). It does not impact the likelihood or level of any potential investment.
Map data ©2021 Google

Priority pavilion / changing room projects

Small sided facilities

Good facilities are important to all small sided football players, but it is important to understand the different formats of the small-sided game and the various facility types they relate to.

Research suggests that small-sided players in teams and leagues, and in recreational sessions, prefer a 3G surface type because it replicates a good standard natural turf pitch. These facilities have already been covered in the 3G FTP section of this LFFP.

Indoor environments currently accommodate 20% of football participation and are also popular with players in teams and leagues and recreational sessions . Indoor sports halls are most popular, along with some community halls and indoor 3G centres. Environments need to be engaging, have clear line-marking and the correct size goalposts.

Informal players require facilities that are open and free to access as this enables play opportunities that are often spontaneous. In these circumstances multi-use games areas (MUGAs) can be effective in areas of high urban population and limited green space. Such facilities can be modern, bright, creative and engaging. While this plan will identify suitable locations for such facilities, the design and specifics of the facility type can be agreed at a later stage with Football Foundation staff when projects are ready to progress to pre-application stage.

Parks and open green spaces are also important to informal play and require goalposts and zones that are free from litter and dog fouling.

2019 small sided 4
132248.JPG

Priority projects

0 Improved indoor spaces
4 MUGAs
0 Better parks / open green spaces

Indoor

Local consultation indicates that, at present, no indoor facilities require improvement to develop small sided football.

Multi use games areas

Four potential opportunities for MUGAs are identified. In each case the rationale is based on the site being in an area with relatively high proportions of people from lower social economic groups, rurally isolated communities and corresponding high local demand for informal football:

Parks and open green spaces

No locations have been identified to support small sided informal football in parks / open green spaces.

4

Leverington Sports & Social Club

Leverington, PE13 3RA
Location

LEVERINGTON SPORTS AND SOCIAL CLUB Church Road, Leverington, Cambridgeshire, PE13 3RA

Facilities
  • Small sided informal (MUGA) (1)
  • Natural grass pitch improvements (3)
Owner

Other

Deliverability score

Medium (2/4)

NFFS outcome score

2.4/4

Overall score

56% (6.7/12)

Notes

Current users - Leverington Sports

Existing facilities - 3 full sized grass pitch equivalents

Rationale - Site identified in PPS as having poor quality grass pitches. FF engagement lead has also identified potential for conversion of existing tarmac tennis courts to a small sided football facility.

Project Focus

Adult male; Small-sided informal; Youth male

9

Manor Leisure Centre, Whittlesey

PETERBOROUGH, PE7 1UE
Location

MANOR LEISURE CENTRE MANOR LEISURE CENTRE STATION ROAD, WHITTLESEY, PETERBOROUGH, Cambridgeshire, PE7 1UE

Facilities
  • Small sided informal (MUGA) (1)
Owner

Local Authority

Deliverability score

High (3/4)

NFFS outcome score

2.8/4

Overall score

72% (8.6/12)

Notes

Existing facilities - Sand - based MUGA

Current users - Informal, recreational football use

Rationale - Site identified by Freedom leisure as having potential to deliver informal football outcomes in a deprived area of the district and subject to occurrences of ASB.

Project Focus

IMD / lower social economic groups; Small-sided informal; Small-sided recreational; Youth female; Youth male

10

Parkfield Sports Club, Wimblington

WIMBLINGTON, PE15 0QX
Location

PARKFIELD SPORTS CLUB THE PARKFIELD CHAPEL LANE, WIMBLINGTON, Cambridgeshire, PE15 0QX

Facilities
  • Small sided informal (MUGA) (1)
Owner

Other

Deliverability score

High (3/4)

NFFS outcome score

2.9/4

Overall score

74% (8.9/12)

Notes

Current facilities - Floodlit sand based MUGA

Existing users- Informal, recreational football use.

Rationale- Site identified during consultation with Parkfield Sports club and Living sport as delivering informal football outcomes in a rurally isolated locality. Sand based surface is tired and need of replacement.
Multi sport short pile surface would be more appropriate than 3G given the sites current usage by netball.

Project Focus

IMD / lower social economic groups; Small-sided informal; Youth female; Youth male

11

Wisbech small sided facility

Unknown
Location

Location details: Wisbech

Facilities
  • Small sided informal (MUGA) (1)
Owner

Not known

Deliverability score

Medium (2/4)

NFFS outcome score

2.6/4

Overall score

60% (7.2/12)

Notes

Current facilities -n/a

Existing users - n/a

Rationale - Wisbech has the highest concentrations of deprivation in the district and should be prioritised as an area that could benefit from additional small sided facilities linked potentially to areas of new housing growth.

Project Focus

IMD / lower social economic groups; Small-sided informal; Youth female; Youth male

A project's overall score provides an indication of its potential outcomes and deliverability only (weighted twice as much towards the outcomes score). It does not impact the likelihood or level of any potential investment.
Map data ©2021 Google

Small sided priority projects

Appendix A: Priority project list

This list sets out all priority projects for potential investment. Each is scored against two principal factors: deliverability and outcomes (quality, inclusivity, sustainability, engagement and usage).

The list will be used flexibly; project ‘rating’ does not determine the exact order in which it will progress to a funding application to the Football Foundation as many factors influence this. The process for moving a project from this list and into the ‘pre-application stage’ will be managed by the Football Foundation.

1

Neale Wade Sports Centre

MARCH, PE15 9PX
Location

NEALE WADE SPORTS CENTRE WIMBLINGTON ROAD, MARCH, Cambridgeshire, PE15 9PX

Facilities
  • New Changing Pavilion (1)
  • New 11v11 Floodlit 3G FTP (1)
Owner

Education

Deliverability score

High (3/4)

NFFS outcome score

3.0/4

Overall score

75% (9.0/12)

Notes

Current users - March Town Athletic (14 affiliated teams()

Existing facilities- 2 full size grass pitch equivalents.

Rationale- Site identified in PPS as a potential location for new 3G FTP ( in addition to rather than replacing the existing sand based AGP). March identified as an area of shortfall in the PPS . Consultation with school confirmed potential demand from March soccer school.

Project Focus

Adult male; IMD / lower social economic groups; Mini-soccer; Small-sided teams and leagues; Youth female; Youth male

10

Parkfield Sports Club, Wimblington

WIMBLINGTON, PE15 0QX
Location

PARKFIELD SPORTS CLUB THE PARKFIELD CHAPEL LANE, WIMBLINGTON, Cambridgeshire, PE15 0QX

Facilities
  • Small sided informal (MUGA) (1)
Owner

Other

Deliverability score

High (3/4)

NFFS outcome score

2.9/4

Overall score

74% (8.9/12)

Notes

Current facilities - Floodlit sand based MUGA

Existing users- Informal, recreational football use.

Rationale- Site identified during consultation with Parkfield Sports club and Living sport as delivering informal football outcomes in a rurally isolated locality. Sand based surface is tired and need of replacement.
Multi sport short pile surface would be more appropriate than 3G given the sites current usage by netball.

Project Focus

IMD / lower social economic groups; Small-sided informal; Youth female; Youth male

9

Manor Leisure Centre, Whittlesey

PETERBOROUGH, PE7 1UE
Location

MANOR LEISURE CENTRE MANOR LEISURE CENTRE STATION ROAD, WHITTLESEY, PETERBOROUGH, Cambridgeshire, PE7 1UE

Facilities
  • Small sided informal (MUGA) (1)
Owner

Local Authority

Deliverability score

High (3/4)

NFFS outcome score

2.8/4

Overall score

72% (8.6/12)

Notes

Existing facilities - Sand - based MUGA

Current users - Informal, recreational football use

Rationale - Site identified by Freedom leisure as having potential to deliver informal football outcomes in a deprived area of the district and subject to occurrences of ASB.

Project Focus

IMD / lower social economic groups; Small-sided informal; Small-sided recreational; Youth female; Youth male

7

Whittlesey FC

PETERBOROUGH, PE7 1PB
Location

WHITTLESEY JFC (OFF) STONALD ROAD, WHITTLESEY, PETERBOROUGH, Cambridgeshire, PE7 1PB

Facilities
  • New Changing Pavilion (1)
Owner

Football club

Deliverability score

High (3/4)

NFFS outcome score

2.6/4

Overall score

68% (8.1/12)

Notes

Current facilities -5 full sized grass pitch equivalents


Existing users - Whittlesey FC


Rationale - Site identified during consultation with the club as requiring improvements to / additional changing facilities. Club have been in consultation with the FF engagement lead

Project Focus

Adult male; IMD / lower social economic groups; Mini-soccer; Youth male

2

Wisbech St Mary

WISBECH, PE13 4SS
Location

WISBECH ST MARY SPORTS AND COMMUNITY CENTRE PLAYING FIELD BEECHINGS CLOSE, WISBECH ST. MARY, WISBECH, Cambridgeshire, PE13 4SS

Facilities
  • New 9v9 Floodlit 3G FTP (1)
Owner

Football club

Deliverability score

Medium (2/4)

NFFS outcome score

3.0/4

Overall score

67% (8.0/12)

Notes

Current facilities - 6 full size grass pitch equivalents

Existing Users - Wisbech St Mary (19 affiliated teams)

Rationale - Consultation with Wisbech St Mary, the largest club in Fenland (step 6) identified that they have limited access to 3G provision for training currently. Provision of a 9 v 9 FTP would , as identified in the PPS enable the club to grow additional age level teams.

Project Focus

Adult female; IMD / lower social economic groups; Mini-soccer; Small-sided teams and leagues; Youth female; Youth male

6

Chatteris Town FC

Chatteris, PE16 6HA
Location

CHATTERIS TOWN FC West Street, Chatteris, Cambridgeshire, PE16 6HA

Facilities
  • Natural grass pitch improvements (2)
Owner

Football club

Deliverability score

High (3/4)

NFFS outcome score

2.3/4

Overall score

63% (7.6/12)

Notes

Existing facilities - two full sized grass pitch equivalents

Current users - Chatteris Town FC (12 affiliated teams)

Rationale - Site identified during consultation with the club as requiring improvements to grass pitches. Chatteris Town (step 7) are a growing club with the potential to possibly accommodate 3G pitch provision in future.

Project Focus

Adult male; Mini-soccer; Youth male

11

Wisbech small sided facility

Unknown
Location

Location details: Wisbech

Facilities
  • Small sided informal (MUGA) (1)
Owner

Not known

Deliverability score

Medium (2/4)

NFFS outcome score

2.6/4

Overall score

60% (7.2/12)

Notes

Current facilities -n/a

Existing users - n/a

Rationale - Wisbech has the highest concentrations of deprivation in the district and should be prioritised as an area that could benefit from additional small sided facilities linked potentially to areas of new housing growth.

Project Focus

IMD / lower social economic groups; Small-sided informal; Youth female; Youth male

8

Thomas Clarkson Academy

WISBECH, PE13 2SE
Location

THOMAS CLARKSON ACADEMY CORPORATION ROAD, WISBECH, Cambridgeshire, PE13 2SE

Facilities
  • Refurbish existing 11v11 3G FTP (1)
Owner

Education

Deliverability score

Medium (2/4)

NFFS outcome score

2.4/4

Overall score

57% (6.8/12)

Notes

Current Users- Wisbech St Mary (19 affiliated teams)

Existing facilities- Full sized 3G FTP

Rationale- 3G FTP installed in 2005 and is stated in the PPS as being in need of resurface

Project Focus

Adult male; IMD / lower social economic groups; Mini-soccer; Youth female; Youth male

4

Leverington Sports & Social Club

Leverington, PE13 3RA
Location

LEVERINGTON SPORTS AND SOCIAL CLUB Church Road, Leverington, Cambridgeshire, PE13 3RA

Facilities
  • Small sided informal (MUGA) (1)
  • Natural grass pitch improvements (3)
Owner

Other

Deliverability score

Medium (2/4)

NFFS outcome score

2.4/4

Overall score

56% (6.7/12)

Notes

Current users - Leverington Sports

Existing facilities - 3 full sized grass pitch equivalents

Rationale - Site identified in PPS as having poor quality grass pitches. FF engagement lead has also identified potential for conversion of existing tarmac tennis courts to a small sided football facility.

Project Focus

Adult male; Small-sided informal; Youth male

5

Gorefield Playing Field

Wisbech, PE13 4NE
Location

GOREFIELD PLAYING FIELD Wolf Lane, Gorefield, Wisbech, Cambridgeshire, PE13 4NE

Facilities
  • Natural grass pitch improvements (4)
Owner

Other

Deliverability score

Medium (2/4)

NFFS outcome score

2.0/4

Overall score

50% (6.0/12)

Notes

Current facilities -4 full size grass pitch equivalents

Existing users -Wisbech Town Acorns (8 affiliated teams)

Rationale - Site identified in PPS , and during consultation with the club as having poor quality pitches.

Project Focus

Adult male; Mini-soccer; Youth male

3

Estover playing field

March, PE15 8SF
Location

ESTOVER PLAYING FIELD Estover Road, March, Cambridgeshire, PE15 8SF

Facilities
  • Natural grass pitch improvements (4)
Owner

Local Authority

Deliverability score

Low (1/4)

NFFS outcome score

2.0/4

Overall score

42% (5.0/12)

Notes

Current users - March academy (21 affiliated teams)

Existing facilities - 4 full size grass pitch equivalents

Rationale- Site identified in PPS as being of poor quality.

Project Focus

Adult male; Mini-soccer; Youth female; Youth male

A project's overall score provides an indication of its potential outcomes and deliverability only (weighted twice as much towards the outcomes score). It does not impact the likelihood or level of any potential investment.

Appendix B: Consultation list

A range of local agencies and larger (usually 10 plus team) local football clubs were invited to participate in the LFFP consultation. Those that contributed are listed below:

  • Senior Health & Active lifestyle officer - Fenland District Council
  • Planning policy offier - Fenland District Council
  • Fenland Active Communities Manager - Freedom leisure
  • Representative - Wisbech St Mary FC
  • Representative - Chatteris FC
  • Representative - March Academy FC
  • Representative - Whittlesey FC
  • PE lead - Neale Wade academy
  • Centre manager - Queen Mary Centre, Wisbech