More sports pitches proposed in East Suffolk leisure strategy

The East Suffolk Leisure Strategy includes plans to improve parks and open spaces in the district.

The East Suffolk Leisure Strategy includes plans to improve parks and open spaces in the district. - Credit: Getty Images/Image Source

More sports pitches and improvements to existing facilities in East Suffolk are being proposed in a leisure strategy for the district. 

A series of objectives have been set out in the plan to help improve the quality and quantity of supply, which includes protecting and enhancing existing pitches and outdoor sports facilities and providing new pitches. 

East Suffolk councillors will decide whether to adopt the strategy at a cabinet meeting on Tuesday, July 5. 

An open space report has also been included within the strategy, which identifies 13 ‘low quality’ open spaces for improvements to bring them up to ‘high quality'.

This number includes Coronation sports ground in Felixstowe, King George's recreation ground in Leiston, North Parade boating lake in Southwold and Waterloo Avenue in Leiston. 

The sites have been selected as priorities due to their location in well-populated areas, although a further 161 open spaces defined as ‘low quality’ have been identified in areas which do not serve many people. 

The main aims for sports facilities are based around public body Sport England’s key themes of protect, enhance and provide - to protect and enhance current sports provisions and to identify areas where there is a need for new facilities to meet demand. 

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The strategy document said: “A key aspect of the Leisure Strategy is to guide future development and growth in understanding the wider needs and opportunities across East Suffolk when developing new housing and infrastructure projects.  

“This seeks to ensure that as much as possible, a holistic approach to delivering health and wellbeing outcomes is achieved from new development.” 

National planning policies have highlighted a network of high-quality open spaces and opportunities for sport and physical activity as being important for health and wellbeing. 

Local planning policies should include assessments of the needs for open space, sports and recreation facilities and opportunities for new provision.