The Football Foundation join the University of Leeds to celebrate the start of works on new football hub

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Bodington Playing Fields will be developed into an impressive sports facility set to include three full size LED floodlit 3G Football Turf Pitches (FTPs), a four-team changing pavilion with community café, meeting space, and a car park.

Football Foundation CEO, Robert Sullivan (centre), with Ella Williams (left), and Suzanne Glavin (right)

This is being made possible thanks to a £4.2m grant from the Premier League, The FA and Government's Football Foundation.

Once completed, the site will be home to six partner clubs whose 142 teams will have access to fantastic facilities. The Hub will also be a central venue for the Garforth Junior Football League and West Riding Girls League - reaching 213 teams by year five. The scheme will also be home to the University's sports programmes which only currently have access to one full-size 3G FTP, as well as supporting the Leeds United Foundation and West Riding County FA to deliver a broad range of recreational programmes and activities for the wider community.

The work at Bodington Playing Fields is a result of extensive work between the Football Foundation, West Riding County FA, Leeds City Council and University of Leeds to progress the development of four Hub sites in Leeds that together would provide 13 new full-size FTPs responding to the need for sporting facilities in and around the city. As well as Bodington Playing Fields the Foundation is working with the council to develop three Hubs - at the former Matthew Murray High School site in Holbeck, Woodhall Sports Ground in Pudsey and Green Park in Temple Newsam.

Robert Sullivan, Chief Executive of the Football Foundation, said: "It is great news for Leeds that the work at Bodington Playing Fields has started.

"This is the latest example of investment from our partners, the Premier League, The FA, Government and Sport England, improving grassroots facilities across the country. This funding will enable more people to enjoy the benefits of playing regular sport."

Suzanne Glavin, Head of Sport and Physical Activity at the University of Leeds, said: "The University is proud to be opening a new facility to support our students and the local community in north Leeds.

"As well as providing an important space for local football clubs in the region and our further investment in the student experience, we hope that it will inspire many more people to become active and we're looking forward to working with our partners to develop new ways to support the community and create more ways for people to get involved in sport."

Sewell Construction have been appointed to carry out the work, with completion expected in the summer of 2022.

Dave Major, Sewell Construction Project Manager added: "We're delighted to have been appointed as contractors for this exciting development at the University of Leeds.

"The investment that has been made into this scheme is evident in the dedication from all partners to create a community hub, with greater access to all within the local area."

"To be able to play our part in the City-wide contribution to sport at a local, regional, and national level, is something we're extremely proud of."

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