Boost for Long Eaton as £50k Sport England grant is received

Nick Dargan
Nick Dargan

LONG Eaton United FC will be able to offer much-improved sporting facilities thanks to £50,000 of Olympic legacy funding from Sport England.

The money will be used to improve football pitch provision in the town, with United now planning to create a new full-sized pitch and improve upon their existing junior pitch. 

Playing surfaces will be improved and junior teams will be able to enjoy pitches that will allow them to develop their technical abilities.

The National Lottery funding, which guarantees the future of the pitch for decades, comes from the latest round of Sport England’s Protecting Playing Fields Olympic legacy fund.

Club coach Nick Dargan, who has been instrumental in securing the funding, said: “We are delighted with the support given to our club from both Sport England and the Derbyshire FA. 

“Having just secured our FA Charter Standard Community Club status, this grant will enable us to offer superb facilities to local players of all ages and will provide a genuine boost to our local community.”

The announcement was also welcomed by local MP Jessica Lee, who said: “I am delighted to hear about the £50,000 Olympic Legacy funding for Long Eaton United Football Club.

“I know the club will secure a great legacy, through the new pitches, for future generations of footballers.”

Long Eaton United FC is among 61 sports clubs and community groups across England to benefit from over £2 million of funding in the second round of Protecting Playing Fields, part of the Places People Play legacy programme that is bringing the inspiration and magic of a home Olympic and Paralympic Games into communities all over the country.

The investments will bring disused playing fields back into use, improve existing sites or create new sports pitches.

The site in Long Eaton will become a Queen Elizabeth II Field after it was agreed for the playing field to be dedicated in “perpetuity”.

This is thanks to a partnership with Fields in Trust (FIT) which is running the Queen Elizabeth II Fields Challenge as part of the programme to mark the Diamond Jubilee and the London 2012 Olympics.

Hundreds more playing fields are set to benefit from a further £6 million over the three remaining rounds of Protecting Playing Fields.

The third round will open for bids in early summer.