PENDLE Forest Sports Club is to be awarded a £49,601 grant to help create three junior football pitches.

The club, based in Fence is hoping to have the pitches up and running by Spring next year to meet the huge demand for junior team pitches in the area.

However they say that £45,000 is still needed before the work, which includes draining and levelling the current pitch, can go ahead.

The grant, from sports charity the Football Foundation is set to be confirmed once the club is able to comply with conditions about land tenure attached to the grant.

Currently the site has one full-size football pitch, a cricket pitch and a clubhouse, with no junior football provision.

Football Foundation says that within a five mile radius of the club there are more than 40 junior teams competing for just fourteen pitches.

The pitches will allow an additional 70 matches a season to be played in the area.

The club says that the pitches at the site which will mean the junior teams will be able to call Pendle Forest Sports Club ‘home’ for the foreseeable future.

David Clark, who has put forward the bid from the club said: “We are thrilled that we should be set to receive this grant. Before it is confirmed the club is required to meet conditions attached to the grant, hopefully this should be completed very soon.

“We are hoping that the remaining money will come from an additional grant and money that the club will find.

“It will be a massive boost to have three junior pitches at the club, it is greatly needed.”

Pendle MP Andrew Stephenson said: “It’s great news, this comes at a time of great sporting achievement locally and nationally and by getting the grant investment is being made for the future generation of our young people.”

Rory Carroll of the Football Foundation said: “This investment is great news for the junior grassroots game in this part of the North West.”