Rishton United Football Club’s plan to develop their home ground will take a step nearer soon when drainage work on the site begins. The project aims to improve and protect Norden Playing Fields in Rishton for future generations of football players.

The club, working in partnership with Proffitts CIC and the Council, are ready to start work on the project which will improve the site by draining and levelling the grass area to allow more pitches and more game time; installing a fence around the pitches to prevent horses and motorbikes damaging the playing surface; creating seating areas for visitors and spectators and installing new paths for better access.

The move comes after the Council granted the club a 25 year lease at the site which enabled the club to establish this land as their home ground and apply for funding from Sport England and the Lancashire Football Association, who require a twenty-five year lease as an essential part of any funding application. Funding for the £280,000 refurbishment scheme has also come from Lancashire Environment Fund, Newground Together, Tesco and the Council.

Cllr Miles Parkinson, Leader of the Council, said “The club are a step nearer to them developing the sports ground, fencing off the pitches and installing changing facilities. This is great news for the whole community as it will promote sport for everyone from youngsters through to seniors. The club have done a lot of hard work to get the funding to make their dream come alive, so it’s fantastic to see their plans coming to fruition now.”

Chic Kelly, Chairman of Rishton United FC, said; “We are really excited to see the project get underway and finally bring local grass roots football back to Rishton.  Our teams have had to travel across the borough to play matches and attend training so this will be welcomed by everyone to have our own home ground.  Whilst we’ve spent 7 years on this project there’s still some fund raising to organise to ensure we complete phase 2 and provide changing facilities and a club house.  The club has teams from under 6s through to under 16s and adult teams and it will be great to see the numbers increase.”

Dave Campbell, Rishton Utd FC Club Secretary added; “The development will also see opportunities for local businesses to get involved and support the project through sponsorship, donations and any services that might help the development come to life.  If any companies wish to offer their support then they are encouraged to contact myself on 07785 362909.”

Pictured below: L-R Cllr Clare Cleary, Martin Proffitt, Cllr Paul Cox, Chic Kelly, Cllr Miles Parkinson, John Leaver.