A £140,000 project has been launched to provide a new all-weather pitch and upgrade floodlights at Long Sutton’s main sports centre.
Grant applications have been made to pay for a new pitch and better lighting at Peele Leisure Centre, home of Long Sutton Hockey Club.
If we weren’t given these grants, it would mean that Long Sutton Hockey Club has nowhere to play and possibly mean that the club could foldPeter Worth, director of Long Sutton Community Sports Association
The project is led by Long Sutton Community Sports Association, which also includes Long Sutton Cricket Club, and aims to replace the existing all-weather pitch which was put down almost 20 years old.
Peter Worth, director of the sports association, said: “The grant applications have all been submitted by Long Sutton Community Sports Association which, as custodian of the pitch, is responsible for the maintenance and hiring out of the facility.
“The carpet on the all-weather pitch is nearing the end of its natural life and Long Sutton Hockey Club is hoping to have a new surface installed during the summer if all the various grant applications are successful.
“The total cost of the project to replace the carpet and upgrade the floodlights is in the region of £140,000 and both Long Sutton Hockey Club and the sports association have been putting money aside over a number of years, with nearly £20,000 available for the project.”
Sport England, the National Hockey Foundation, Lincolnshire County Council and South Holland District Council are some of the organisations approached by the sports association.
But Mr Worth warned that the hockey club’s future could be at risk should the grant applications failed.
“If we weren’t given these grants, it would mean that Long Sutton Hockey Club has nowhere to play and possibly mean that the club could fold, with a knock-on effect on Long Sutton Cricket Club.
“We also have a community use agreement with Peele Community College which means the school has free use of the pitch during the daytime.
“The pitch is looking really good at the moment because we have spent a lot of time in getting it to its present condition.
“Long Sutton Community Sports Association is probably the premier sports club in South Lincolnshire and, as far as the community goes, the hockey club is vital to that because of all the juniors we have coming through the sports centre and school.”
Lorraine Wallis, chairman of Long Sutton Hockey Club, said: “In recent weeks, the pitch has been causing concern with it becoming flooded out and dangerous to play on.
“So we were delighted to have worked with Long Sutton Community Sports Association in putting together as strong a set of grant applications as possible as without a pitch, we’ll all have nowhere to play.”