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Council backs £2.5million sporting investment

Councillors have backed plans to invest £2.5million into sporting facilities across Wychavon.

At an Executive Board meeting on Wednesday (24 July) councillors agreed to invest £1.5million into creating a new artificial 3G pitch, energy efficient floodlighting, changing rooms and social area at Evesham United Football Club, and another £1million into a 3G pitch at King George V Playing Fields in Droitwich.

Both projects form part of Wychavon’s promise to invest up to £5million in sport and leisure facilities by the end of March 2020.

The project in Evesham will be funded by a £576,000 grant from the Football Foundation with the rest coming from funding connected to planning agreements for new homes – known as Section 106 money. The changing rooms and social area will be part of a pavilion which will also include solar panels to reduce its carbon footprint. The development will be used to increase the number of footballers in the area and work is expected on site by September 2019.

In Droitwich, the project will be funded by Section 106 money and work is expected to start by May 2020. It is the first part of a wider project to improve football facilities in the area. Officers are working with Droitwich Spa Community Football Club to look at funding options to develop a stadium pitch and stadia alongside the 3G proposals. This would include a turnstile and small stand and would allow both the men’s and women’s team to play their home games in Droitwich.

Currently they have to play elsewhere as the existing facilities do not meet the entry requirements for higher leagues. Once completed it would also support the development of boys and girls football at a junior level. The changing rooms and pavilion also need refurbishing or rebuilding.

Cllr Rob Adams, Executive Board Member for Community Engagement, Culture and Sport on Wychavon District Council, said: “This is an exciting and game-changing investment in sporting facilities that will inspire more people to get out and get active as well as develop the next generation of sporting talent.”