0 Millwall FC goalkeeper Jordan Archer praises new Astley Cooper Estate football facility

Millwall FC Chief Executive, Steve Kavanagh and goalkeeper, Jordan Archer opened a new third generation (3G) artificial grass pitch (AGP) within the Astley Cooper Estate in South Bermondsey recently.

Millwall Chief Executive, Steve Kavanagh (centre left) and goalkeeper, Jordan Archer (centre) were on hand to unveil the new 3G pitch in Southwark

The upgraded facility was made possible thanks to investment from the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund, which is delivered by the Football Foundation.

The grant enabled Southwark Council to refurbish an existing 36m x 21m hard court to create a new floodlit 3G AGP. Located in the heart of the Astley Cooper Estate, the new pitch is surrounded by almost 500 properties and is free to use all year round by residents and community groups.

The estate is located just a mile away from The Den and Millwall FC's Community Trust will work in conjunction with Southwark Council to use the site to deliver football and coach education courses to young people and adults living on and around the estate.

Southwark Council were awarded a £42,068 grant from the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund towards the project. The council worked alongside the Football Foundation and the London 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.

The new surface is set to support an increase of over 750 people playing football at the site over the next five years, which represents a growth of 1,056%. Of this, significant growth in the number of women playing football is also anticipated, with 232 new participants expected.

With the Millwall Community Trust delivering the football development plan, the aim is to establish a community entry level into the game which enhances the opportunities that are already in place. The new pitch will enable the Trust to encourage and improve the level of engagement and increase participation through additional sessions for veterans and disabled people throughout the year.

For the full article visit: www.footballfoundation.org.uk

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