New changing pavilion gets grand unveiling as Hackney Marshes project reaches end
PUBLISHED: 18:00 20 September 2018
© Steve Davey/stevedavey.com 2018
A new changing pavilion was officially opened recently on Wednesday, marking the completion of a multi-million pound regeneration project at Hackney Marshes.
The project was made possible through investment from the Premier League and The FA Facilities Fund, which is delivered by the Football Foundation.
Working in partnership with the Football Foundation, England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) and other funders, Hackney Council have overhauled the facilities at one of the largest grassroots football sites in Europe.
The project works included partial levelling; drainage and reconfiguration of 10 grass pitches; installation of three new changing pavilions with the capacity to hold 46 teams; and a new state-of-the-art third generation (3G) artificial grass pitch (AGP).
The new changing pavilion has replaced facilities which were no longer fit for purpose and did not meet the required guidelines and regulations.
The new all-weather pitch has been installed with floodlights, enabling increased capacity and availability thanks to it being usable during the evening.
Hackney Marshes is widely considered the home of grassroots football, with more than 60 football pitches, the greatest concentration anywhere in Europe, as well as 10 cricket pitches and three rugby pitches.
Hackney Council were awarded a £1.9m grant from the Premier League and The FA Facilities Fund towards the project.
The council worked alongside the Football Foundation and London County FA to compile a five-year Football Development Plan, which is a vision of how sport will be played on site with an emphasis on increasing participation.
Since 2000, the Football Foundation Funding Partners’ investment has provided 328 grants worth £24.1m towards grassroots sports projects worth over £55.1m across the whole of London County FA.
It is expected that regeneration will contribute to nearly 3,000 new people playing football at Hackney Marshes, which represents a growth of 257%.
Of this, it is predicted that over 600 new female players will start playing football at the site, which reflects a 1,366% rise within this demographic.