Burton Albion boss Nigel Clough took time out from his schedule to open a new 3G pitch in the town this week.
The former England forward, now in his second spell as Brewers boss, was joined by his chairman Ben Robinson on a visit to Anglesey Primary Academy where a grant from the Premier League and FA Facilities Fund helped to cover the cost of the artificial surface.
The new facilities will be used by pupils and the wider community and the £236,000 project was made possible thanks to a £140,593 grant delivered by the Football Foundation, the country’s largest sports charity.
Situated just a few miles away from the national football centre at St. George’s Park, Anglesey Academy already has links with Burton Albion Community Trust [BACT], who will use the facility during evenings and weekends to deliver its community programme.
The new pitch will also be used by local Charter Standard clubs Branston FC and Anglesey Swifts for training and Mini-Soccer fixtures.
Prior to this funding, there was a shortage of AGPs within the East Staffordshire area, meaning the pitch at Anglesey is a much needed facility for all to increase participation in football.
"It was a great pleasure to see the opening of this fantastic new facility which will be an asset to the community," said Robinson, after joining Clough at the launch.
"Burton Albion and BACT are committed to making an impact in the community and I’m sure the BACT staff will help make this new facility a great success with their programmes alongside the school.
"Thanks must go to the Football Foundation for their support and commitment to improving facilities like this through the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund."
The Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund
- Funded by the Premier League, The FA, and the Government, via Sport England
- Delivered by the Football Foundation, the country’s largest sports charity
- Since launch in 2000, the Foundation has awarded 14,000 grants worth more than £546m towards grassroots sport
And Charlotte Hopkins, Head Teacher of Anglesey Primary Academy, added: "We are absolutely delighted with how this facility has transformed our lunchtimes, after school clubs and PE lessons.
"The weather does not stop PE lessons here anymore, ensuring that the children are getting healthier and increasing their skills. We have already seen an increase in the number of children from all different backgrounds taking part in the football lessons we provide.
"We would like to thank Nigel Clough and Ben Robinson for officially opening the facility. Ben grew up in this area – he is a great role model for our children as they can see what he has achieved."
The development also supports the delivery of the Staffordshire FA County Strategy, providing a base for delivering projects and programmes to help increase the number of teams, coaches and volunteers within Burton-on-Trent, supporting the delivery of The FA Youth Review for younger players.
The school worked in partnership with the Staffordshire County FA to secure a £140,593 grant from the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund. Staffordshire County Council also contributed £85,000 to the project while the school paid £10,500.