New 3G Pitch opens to boost grassroots sport

Feb 25, 2023




New 3G Pitch opens to boost grassroots sport

A brand new, state-of-the-art sports facility was officially opened at Vandyke Upper School on Thursday.

The new 3G football pitch was made possible thanks to investment from the Premier League, the FA, the Football Foundation and Central Beds Council.

After netting a £700k grant from the Football Foundation and further contribution from Central Beds Council, work began in September with the pitch handed over in January and already fully in use by the school and wider community.

The facility extends opportunities for training and development of football in the town, especially for young people, girls and boys.

Mr Carroll, Headteacher at Vandyke, said, “This is a marvellous facility that further enhances sporting opportunity in our school and for the wider community.  It is a delight to see students enjoying using the pitch and in the evenings and at weekends members of the public through local clubs making full use of it.  Today’s official opening was a lovely occasion.  Many thanks to Leighton Town coaches for providing a great coaching session for boys’ and girls’ teams to mark the occasion.”

Head of PE at Vandyke, Mr Turney, said, “It is a fantastic facility that supports physical activity and helps involve even more young people in getting active and playing sport.  It helps strengthen still further our links with local football clubs.”

Former Vandyke student and former Southampton, Sunderland and Ipswich Town goalkeeper Kelvin Davies came back to the school and cut the ribbon on the new pitch.

Robert Sullivan, Chief Executive of the Football Foundation, said, “We are delighted that Vandyke’s new pitch is now open after receiving Football Foundation investment.  Good quality facilities support the health of local people and communities, which is why we are investing in projects like this across the country with funding provided by the Premier League, The FA, Government and Sport England.”

The Football Foundation is the largest sports charity in the UK.  It champions and supports fair access to quality football facilities for everyone, regardless of gender, race, disability or place.  The Foundation receives money from the Premier League, the FA and the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport through Sport England.  This is matched with partnership funding and awarded as grants to create outstanding grassroots facilities that enable better games and attract more players, helping to transform communities through engagement I structured sport.

Visit for more information on the Foundation.

To see more photographs of the opening ceremony, please see this Facebook photo album.

Post by Vicky Hunt