A community group that campaigned for replacement playgrounds to be created in Welshpool for those lost on Salop Road to the new school appears to have made a significant breakthrough.
Welshpool Town Football Club has applied for town planning to Powys County Council to change an area of farmland (on the picture) near the city for recreational use.
The club worked with the community group, led by former Welshpool High School principal Paul Coackley, to identify and secure a new facility to address the shortage created three years ago by the development of Salop Road.
“This is a big step forward for the city and the community in replacing the pitches,” said Chris Roberts, president of Welshpool Town Football Club, in a joint statement with Mr Coackley.
“We have been working together on this subject for over three years now and this represents a major opportunity. “
The app will be decided by the planners at Powys, but it is hoped that it will be well received as some clubs in Welshpool have had to play their matches and train outside of town.
The next phase of the project, if approved, will be to raise funds to transform the field west of the current rugby fields into playing surfaces. This figure is estimated to be around £ 60,000 and a crowdfunding site is being created to accept donations.
“We will need to raise funds to create good quality land and we want to start work in April 2022 so that we start the growing season in the spring,” Coackley said.
“This will allow us to have potentially playable fields in September 2022. This will benefit juniors, young people and women and allow the club to expand its offer, especially on the girls’ side.”
The group is also actively seeking grants from various sources and will be launching a number of fundraising initiatives.
The project has already received support from Welshpool City Mayor Alison Davies, who said: “This is great news for Welshpool. The loss of land near the Flash put a strain on the clubs and the grounds of the town hall. There are a lot more teams and age groups and we have all struggled to find solutions.
“By working together and working a lot, it seems like we’re almost there! Well done to everyone involved. “
Welshpool County Councilor Graham Breeze also supported the bid and said: “This is a wonderful community initiative that I hope the people and businesses of Welshpool will support. This is a unique opportunity to offer long-term reception structures to young people in the city.
“Junior and women’s football suffered a great loss when Powys County Council took down the Salop Road gaming facilities and it was a huge task to find and provide an alternative solution.
“I can’t talk enough about the people who worked tirelessly to get there. They deserve all the support we can give them as a city.
Anyone needing further information or wishing to support can contact Mr. Coackley at firstname.lastname@example.org.