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Everton excited by Barclays continued funding in local sports

Wed 14th Dec 2011 | Football Stadiums & Facilities

The Arncliffe Sports and Community Centre in Halewood is celebrating having received a grant of £18,000 from Barclays Spaces for Sports (BS4S) to help revitalise the sporting venue.

The extra funding from BS4S will enable the site to offer more opportunities for children and adults to participate in sport, with more regular coaching sessions to be held, as well as a range of new activities introduced on site.

The Everton FC ‘Flagship site’ originally received £600,000 from BS4S allowing the Arncliffe Sports and Community Centre to be transformed into a state-of-the-art sporting ground consisting of numerous pitches, changing rooms, a multi-use games area and all weather surface.

Despite the top class facilities, the Arncliffe Centre has seen the number of users drop dramatically in recent months and further investment was required to help boost participation figures and keep the facility open.

The additional funding that the Arncliffe Sports and Community Centre has received is just one example of how BS4S is demonstrating its commitment to ensuring the facilities that it has funded are sustainable. Since launching the UK programme in 2004 in partnership with the Football Foundation, the Barclays Spaces for Sports project has benefitted more than half a million people in socially deprived regions.

Everton in the Community, a leading sports charity, will deliver a programme of football and other sports at the site, encouraging more young people to continue to be active whilst also helping to reduce anti-social behaviour within the local area.

Also, young children’s, disabled, and girls’ football are under-represented on the site and Halewood Town Council is using the BS4S grant to change this. The Girls Development Centre plan to set up a new girls’ football team and multi-sport camps are to be introduced, allowing users to try new sports, gain confidence and build self-esteem. Disability football sessions will also be delivered to encourage adults with disabilities to use the centre.

The partnership between Barclays and the Football Foundation sees one of the world’s largest corporate banks join forces with one of the leading sports charities to help provide opportunities for communities to engage, learn and develop through sport.

John Green, town manager for Halewood Town Council said: “The sustainability grant will assist the Town Council and their valued partners in not only enriching the facility aesthetically but more importantly it will help us to fund schemes targeting minority groups, as well as encouraging volunteers in the local community to obtain FA standard qualifications.

“This is seen as a catalyst for the future, where the volunteers enable the various schemes to become sustainable in the longer term. There is no doubt that without the assistance of Barclays Spaces for Sports and the Football Foundation, we would not be able to offer such opportunities.”

Kirk Harrison, Head of Barclays Spaces for Sports, said: “A key part of our commitment at Barclays Spaces for Sports is to deliver a lasting legacy to communities through the use of our sites. We’ve been working closely with the Football Foundation throughout the programme to achieve this and the additional funding The Arncliffe Sports and Community Centre has received is an example of our commitment to our projects and the local communities.”

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