Football Foundation offering much-needed financial relief for clubs with grass pitches

PUBLISHED: 13:06 11 May 2020 | UPDATED: 13:16 11 May 2020

Potters Bar Town have already started some work on their Pakex Stadium pitch.

Potters Bar Town have already started some work on their Pakex Stadium pitch.

Archant

Non-league clubs have been given a potential financial lifeline to help protect and renew one of their most valuable commodities – their grass pitch.

In conjunction with the Premier League, the FA, the government and Sport England, the Football Foundation has launched a pitch preparation fund which will allow clubs to apply for a grant.

All clubs are facing financial challenges as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak and even though a start date for any new season is unknown, the work required to ensure the playing surface is ready needs to be done now.

The fund provides almost £10m of support and should benefit towards 4,000 grassroots clubs and organisations.

All applicants should play their football between steps one and six of the National League System, maintain their own natural grass pitches and have at least 12 months security of tenure.

Examples of the essential maintenance work this money could go to includes vertical decompaction, slitting, over seeding, fertilising and weed-killing.

It could also include routine preparatory works such as grass-cutting and the setting out and line-marking of pitches.

Robert Sullivan, the Football Foundation’s interim chief executive, said: “This fund reflects our determination to make funding available to help get pitches match-ready for when restrictions are lifted.

“The Football Foundation will work with eligible clubs and community organisations across the country to ensure they get what they need.

“We are here to help.”

The FA’s Mark Bullingham added: “These are extraordinary and challenging times, not just for football, but across society and as always our first thoughts are with those families affected.

“We remain committed to supporting clubs during this uncertain period and that’s why the FA has joined forces with the Premier League and government to create this new initiative.”

The application window is open until 9pm on Monday, May 25.

Go to www.footballfoundation.org.uk for further details on the fund and how to apply.


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