Artificial 3G pitch

As part of the masterplan for Newbold Comyn, we’ll be introducing a brand new artificial 3G pitch on the site.

The new pitch will greatly increase participation in football in the area and will help to support the demand for quality football pitches in the district, allowing play all year round.

Why a 3G pitch?

Warwick District Council has undertaken an analysis of the demand for outdoor sports pitches in the District, including Artificial Turf Pitches (ATP) in collaboration with Sport England. The findings of this analysis, along with the implications for future provision and allowing for the increases in population envisaged in the Local Plan have been used to devise a Playing Pitch Strategy for the District.

One of the conclusions this strategy reached is the number of Artificial Turf Pitches (ATP) that will be required to satisfy the likely demand for football in the District. Five pitches are required in total in an even spread across the District, with one identified at Newbold Comyn.

Why have it at Newbold Comyn?

The area already has many grass football pitches, and it is an existing hub for the sport. There is existing parking at the site and there are also existing changing rooms, although these will need to be re-modelled to comply with modern standards.

Where will it be?

The location will take up space currently occupied by 3 existing smaller sided grass pitches for junior football. It will be possible to relocate two of these pitches to other locations within the site. One junior grass pitch will be lost, but this will be more than compensated for with the substantial increase in football that can take place on the ATP.

What about the impact to wildlife?

The site will require floodlights for evening use. In order to obtain planning permission for the installation of floodlights, it will be necessary to carry out surveys to ascertain the wildlife on the site and to assess the potential impact on such wildlife of the floodlights. Floodlights in this location will not impact on residential properties.

As part of the overall masterplan for Newbold Comyn, it is the case that some of the facilities will need to support the site financially to enable good environmental management to happen, and this includes the hire of pitches.

The masterplan introduces much higher ecological value than the existing site offers, whilst also offering new and improved facilities - particularly expanded areas for a new nature reserve that were previously used as a golf course.

The 3G pitch would displace some of the existing pitches and there would be a form of “ecological tax” in the loss of biodiversity credits attached to our development. However, the Council will be required by the new Environment Act to seek at least 10% net biodiversity gains in return for permission to develop the new pitch.

Plans for the cycling facility alone have included much higher than 10% biodiversity gains in the planting scheme for the site, so we are able to use the masterplan to balance or even improve the impact of one aspect of the masterplan on the whole site.

Who is paying for this?

The Council is seeking a substantial grant from the Football Foundation for the provision of this facility, and in order to qualify for a grant it has been necessary to enter into a development agreement with the Foundation.

The Football Foundation is very supportive as a potential funder of this project. The Council will work closely with the Foundation throughout the next phase of this project, as well as through the construction phase if this is approved. The Foundation have knowledge of many similar projects, and their advice will prove as valuable as their financial contribution to the project, if they agree to help fund the works.

It is currently estimated that the cost of the ATP will be between £800,000 and £1.5 million. It is further estimated that the costs of the works to the changing rooms will be between £600,000 and £1.25 million. However, costs within the construction industry are extremely volatile at present and a more detailed costing will be required.

It will also be necessary to identify the sources of funding for this facility. This will depend on the Council’s use of s106 funding and any potential grant from the Football Foundation.