BAD pitches, run down facilities and lack of funding – it seems they go hand in hand with local amateur football.

But perhaps not any more in East Lanacshire.

For a new exciting initiative could mean the face of grassroots football is about to change forever.

A newly formed group – included three of the most prominent leagues in the area – have teamed up with the council it what could be classed as a test case study.

While it is early days for the East Lancashire Football Development Association, the future could be about to become very bright.

The ELFDA, along with Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council are looking at ways to secure funding to be used on not only improving existing pitches but looking at ways of finding new venues to play the game.

They are also exploring avenues of perhaps one day taking control of the playing pitches themselves – something that could be copied in other areas of the country should it be a success.

It is not going to happen overnight but the feeling I get from inside both camps is that this could be the start of something special for local amateur football – and that will be welcome news to everyone involved in the game.