Hatfield's Birchwood is set to get new pitches and other improvements as part of a £1 million investment project.

The Hatfield Community Sport Fund Board agreed to fund new facilities at the site in north Hatfield during a meeting on Monday, October 16.

The outline project, which is being led by Hatfield Town Council, will see a new full size 3G football pitch built, a re-laid multi-use games area capable of hosting tennis, netball and hockey, a new all-weather outdoor basketball court and outdoor gym equipment.

This will be in addition to a full grass pitch improvement programme, being supported by the Football Foundation, which Hatfield Town Council and Hertfordshire FA have already agreed to.

Subject to planning approval, the proposals are set include additional car parking to alleviating congestion issues on weekends, and lighting of the public path leading to the Oldings Corner retail park.

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After a number of failed attempts to push the project through, Councillor Larry Crofton, leader of Hatfield Town Council, was pleased his administration was able to present a credible project for approval.

"For too long, endless squabbling by previous administrations has meant Hatfield residents have been denied this investment," he said. 

"This will be a valuable community asset which will help the youth of Hatfield enter various sports. I’m proud that we have been able to act decisively to secure the funding."

Like many who use the facilities, Daniel Watt of Birchwood FC is delighted that investment is finally going ahead, saying: "A number of our youth teams, both boys and girls, play at Birchwood and so we are looking forward to learning more about the planned improvements and working with the Town Council to deliver a real community asset."

Steve Maker, head of football development and investment at Hertfordshire FA, added: "Hertfordshire FA is committed to promoting and supporting grassroot football in the area and we are delighted to be working with Hatfield Town Council to meet the strategic need for football participation, by supporting the proposal to upgrade the community facilities at Birchwood."