Popular club unveils 'exciting' project for new 3G football pitch
- Credit: Archant
A brand new full size 3G football pitch could be built within the grounds of a Lowestoft academy, should a scheme be given the green light.
Officials at Waveney FC have expressed pride after confirming "a massive project" is now being progressed, as they link up with Lowestoft high school - the Benjamin Britten Academy of Music and Mathematics - Suffolk FA and the Football Foundation.
Confirming the exciting development on Wednesday evening (May 11) after ongoing recent talks, it comes after "a full size 3G FTP to service Waveney FC" was highlighted as being second on the priority list of the East Suffolk Local Football Facility Plan.
Hailing the "exciting news", Mark Gamble, chairman of Waveney FC, said: "It is with great pride and excitement that the club's trustees are able to confirm that following consultation with the Football Foundation and supported by Suffolk County FA as a priority project that Waveney FC in partnership with the Benjamin Britten Academy of Music and Mathematics have achieved the required criteria and outcomes to proceed with an application to build a full size 3G ATP.
"This will be not only be a fantastic facility and a massive asset for the club’s membership and the academy but will have a wider impact on the local community which Waveney serves."
Having celebrated its 40th anniversary as a club in 2018, another "exciting milestone" is set to be marked.
Mr Gamble added: "It represents an exciting milestone in the club's long term ambitions and will offer opportunities to engage with other organisations and groups, both local and national.
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"It will build on the club's long tradition of more than 40 years, to provide football for all in terms of around 45 youth teams for boys and girls, six adult teams both male and female offering senior and local league football including veterans, U18s, disability football and walking football groups as well as a thriving Saturday morning football club for those aged from four upwards."
With the club boasting a total membership in excess of 700 players, Waveney FC is the largest club in the county.
Mr Gamble added: "Having been awarded charitable status last year, this has allowed the club to get to this stage of our development and meet the club's charitable aims and objectives to provide football to the local community.
"The project itself was highlighted within the East Suffolk Local football facility plan supported by Suffolk FA, The Football Foundation, Sport England, East Suffolk Council together with Active Sport and the Ipswich Town Community Trust - who identified Waveney FC as a club to offer investment to accelerate and deliver a sustainable football programme.
"This was highlighted to address and promote well-being, both physical and mental health, social outcomes and tackle inactivity to increase and grow participation which will transform the lives of the wider community."
With a "great deal of work and planning" being carried out behind the scenes to get to this stage, Mr Gamble said: "While there is still a lot to do, we are really thrilled to be able to finally announce this project on the eve of the club's presentation awards over the next two weekends to celebrate the club's team and individual successes over the last season.
"Waveney FC has always had wonderful support from our parents, supporters, players, managers, coaches and volunteers.
"I know that everyone connected with the club will be very excited about the project and the future of the club ambitions, and will wholeheartedly get behind this development as we begin a fundraising programme."
This will start with a summer fundraising ball - with all proceeds going to "our new 3G pitch" - at Ivy House Country Hotel in Oulton Broad, Lowestoft on Saturday, July 8 from 7pm.
Featuring food, a charity auction and live music from the Austin Beats, tickets are now available at £30 each by emailing email@example.com
Mr Gamble added: "More events are planned to enable us to reach the match funding required and we would welcome any individuals, companies and businesses to join us on this wonderful journey."