Aston Villa striker Gabriel Agbonlahor took time out this week to help Boldmere Falcons FC's young footballers celebrate a double funding boost worth £714,129.
The Sutton Coldfield club, whose website is powered by Club Website, will benefit from a new third generation (3G) artificial grass pitch and a state-of-the-art pavilion as a result of the cash boost from the Football Foundation.
The Charter Standard club run over 30 teams for boys and girls in the Boldmere area of Birmingham, some of whom were on hand to showcase their skills for local star Agbonlahor as he presented a cheque for £464, 129 to Boldmere Sports and Social Club, of whom the Falcons are a part.
The funding boost is the third in recent weeks for Club Website's member clubs. Lancashire's Oswaldtwistle St Mary’s FC and Hampshire's Ringwood Town FC also recently received boosts from the Football Foundation, who are funded by the Premier League, the Football Association and government via Sport England.
On top of the Foundation funding, the FA also provided Boldmere Sports & Social Club with additional an grant of £250,000 as part of their capital allocation within the Whole Sport Plan agreed with Sport England.
This specific aspect of funding has been awarded to support the sustainability of community clubs and create more opportunities to participate in sport within a high quality environment. Sutton Coldfield Municipal Charities contributed a further £50,000 to the project.
When complete, the 3G pitch and changing rooms will allow Boldmere Falcons use of elite training facilities, changing rooms and medical and referees provisions. Previously, the club could not train on the site during the winter and could not offer enough adequate facilities for its female members.
A product of Aston Villa’s academy, Gabby Agbonlahor was impressed with the plans for the club. “When complete, these facilities will be really fantastic," he said.
"Having played football in the Midlands since I was young, I know the huge benefit that this site will have for local footballers.
"It is great to see money from the top of the game and Sport England going into the grassroots through the Football Foundation.”
Falcons Chairman Brian Bryant said: “This is a proud time for the club and for me as Chairman.
"It has been my dream for over four years to improve facilities for the boys and girls at this club, and thanks to the support of the Football Foundation and other supporters that dream is coming true.”
Paul Thorogood, Chief Executive of the Football Foundation, said: “This funding is excellent news for the Boldmere area. Boldmere Falcons Football Club, Boldmere Sports & Social Club and the Birmingham County FA deserve credit for their hard work in making this happen.
“This project is but one of thousands that the Foundation is supporting across the country with money provided by the Premier League, The FA and Government. In Birmingham alone we have supported 232 projects worth £32.1m.”
To find out more about the Football Foundation visit www.footballfoundation.org.uk.
Need advice on funding for your club? Check out our CW Guide to Funding (pdf file).
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