Thetford Town FC officially
unveiled their brand new clubhouse and upgraded changing pavilion recently
(Friday 16 March). The project was made possible by a grant from the Premier
League, through the Football Stadia Improvement Fund (FSIF) – the largest
funders of non-league football in the country.
The funding has enabled Thetford Town FC, which plays in the East Counties
League Premier Division at Step 5, to install a state-of-the-art new clubhouse
and make much-needed improvements to their existing changing facilities. The
Norfolk club, which was originally formed in 1883, is delighted with the
Thetford Town FC’s original clubhouse was built in the early 1950s and was no
longer fit for use by a modern football club. The brand new facility will
provide better support for the club’s needs and includes a social space,
kitchen, meeting room and toilets.
The club’s existing changing pavilion has also been reconfigured and
refurbished as part of the project. This has included developing a home team
changing room with new showers, creating a new officials’ changing room with
en-suite facilities, and remodelling the existing social area to provide
storage and an office.
The improved facilities will benefit Thetford Town FC’s nine teams, ranging
from the Under-8 to Veteran level. The more comfortable changing provision and
brand new clubhouse will provide a better environment for all club members, as
well as improving the club’s sustainability for the future. Thetford Town FC
hopes that this will help them not only to retain existing players, but also
inspire new ones.
The project was made possible by a £100,000 grant from the Premier League,
which is delivered through the Football Stadia Improvement Fund – the sister
organisation of the Football Foundation.
Funded with £6.5m each year from the Premier League, the FSIF – the sister
organisation of the Football Foundation – is the country’s largest provider of
grants towards projects that help improve the comfort and safety of lower
league football grounds in both the professional and amateur game. These
improvements range from new football stands and turnstiles to floodlighting and
improved provision for disabled supporters.
David Skipp, Vice Chairman of Thetford Town FC, said: “Our new facilities will not only
benefit the club but also the community by providing a safe venue for sports
and social activities. The funding from the Premier League, through the
Football Stadia Improvement Fund, and the Breckland Council have made this
project viable. We also had a very generous sponsor for this project who wishes
to remain anonymous, this help has made the three years hard work worthwhile
and all the teams within the club will benefit from this great project.”
Peter McCormick OBE, Chairman of the Football Stadia Improvement Fund, said: “Thetford Town FC’s new clubhouse and
changing pavilion is really going to benefit their players, and I’m so pleased
that investment from the Premier League, through the FSIF, has helped them to
make this project a reality – just one of many projects they are funding across
“Their money is being
used to upgrade infrastructure and create safer, more comfortable environments
for players and spectators at all levels. This is so important, not just in
helping to inspire love of the game, but also in helping clubs ensure the
safety of its members.”