More than a dozen grassroots football clubs in East Lancashire are set to share in excess of half a million pounds investment in the latest round of facilities funding.

The Government, along with its Football Foundation partners the Premier League and The FA, is investing £64 million nationally into grassroots sports facilities to get people playing sport on quality pitches.

More than 1,600 new and improved multi-sports grassroot facilities across England are benefitting from Government support, improving access to good quality facilities for thousands of people.

In East Lancashire, 13 clubs are sharing £548,109 in funding, which will cover new goalposts, maintenance equipment, and two huge projects in Blackburn and Accrington worth around a quarter of a million pounds apiece.

Lancashire Telegraph: Burnley Belvedere will benefit from the new round of fundingBurnley Belvedere will benefit from the new round of funding (Image:

Blackburn Rovers has received almost £250,000 for an artificial grass pitch upgrade, while Accrington Stanley Community Trust has received £250,000 for an extension to its Stanley Sports Hub.

A host of grassroots clubs across Blackburn, Hyndburn, Pendle, Rossendale and Darwen, and the Ribble Valley, have received funding totalling more than £50,000.

No clubs in the Burnley constituency have received any funding in this round of grants.

The funding will deliver upgrades, improvements, and new pitches – making more high quality facilities available for people to play football and other sports.

Secretary of State for the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, Lucy Frazer, said: “Sport is vital to our physical and mental health and wellbeing, which is why we’re levelling up grassroots sports facilities across the North West to give more people better access to high quality pitches and changing rooms.

READ MORE: Blackburn Rovers retained list: Three players offered new contracts

“215 sites across the North West are benefitting from a share of £64m investment in new and improved grassroots sports facilities.

“These improved facilities, delivered with our Football Foundation partners, will help people across the North West get active.”

East Lancashire sports clubs receiving Government grassroots facilities funding


  • Poppy-Mai FC, Blackburn – Goalposts - £307
  • Blackburn Rovers – Artificial grass pitch upgrade - £246,995
  • Mount Carmel Roman Catholic High School (Globe Bullough Park FC), Accrington – Goalposts - £881
  • Stanley Sports Hub (Accrington Stanley Community Trust) – Hyndburn Hub building extension - £250,000
  • Somerton Recreation Ground (Rossendale Valley Junior FC) – Goalposts - £1,080
  • St Peters Playing Field (Rossendale Valley Junior FC) – Goalposts - £3,240
  • Belvedere and Calder Vale Sports Club (Burnley Belvedere FC) – Grass pitch maintenance equipment - £9,143
  • Read St John’s CofE Primary School (Readstone United JFC) – Goalposts - £578
  • Mellor Juniors Football Club – Goalposts - £2,506
  • St Augustine’s Roman Catholic High School (Wilpshire Wanderers FC) – Goalposts - £6,480
  • South Brent Recreation Ground (Ribchester Rovers FC) – Goalposts - £1,440
  • Yarlet School (Leyland Albion FC) – Goalposts - £906
  • Lower Darwen Recreational Ground (Darwen Rangers JFC) – Maintenance equipment - £24,553

As part of the announcement, a new pitch named in honour of Blackburn Rovers academy graduate and Women's Euro 2022 winner Ella Toone has been unveiled at the William Fosters Hub in Wigan, her hometown.

The Ella Toone Pitch is the second of 23 Football Foundation-funded pitches that will be named after each member of the Euros winning squad - which featured fellow Rovers products Georgia Stanway and Keira Walsh - to honour their success last summer and inspire the next generation of women and girls to get involved in the game.

Lancashire Telegraph: Ella Toone celebrates her goal against Germany in the UEFA Womens EURO finalElla Toone celebrates her goal against Germany in the UEFA Womens EURO final (Image: Adam Davy/PA)

Toone, 23, who now plays for Manchester United, said: “It feels just like yesterday that I was a kid kicking a ball around but already so much has changed in the women’s game.

"It’s so exciting to see more and more women and girls wanting to play football and the amazing new facilities here will allow them to do just that.

“As a Lioness I feel a responsibility to be a role model for the next generation and it’s such an honour to do that with a pitch named after me in my hometown.

"I’m so grateful to the Football Foundation for the opportunity to inspire local girls to fall in love with the game just like I did.”

A central aim of the programme is to level up access to facilities in some of the UK’s most deprived areas.

READ MORE: 100 year anniversary of Nelson FC beating Real Madrid

To achieve this, at least 50 per cent of investment is being spent in underprivileged areas, while 40 per cent of the funding will be used to support multi-sport facilities.

This will ensure a wide range of sports are supported and helping to deliver benefits beyond football.

Robert Sullivan, chief executive of the Football Foundation, said: “Thanks to investment from the Premier League, The FA and the Government, the Football Foundation is directing more money than ever into supporting the grassroots game.

“Every one of the facilities we fund will provide equal access for women and girls. That means providing safe, accessible, and inclusive environments for women and girls from their journey to the site right up to their first step onto the pitch.”