Football club officials have their fingers crossed a pot of grant funding will be approved so they can build a new £400,000 all-weather artificial training pitch.
Ruthin Town Football Club has three senior teams, a veterans’ team, six junior sides and hopes to eventually start a girls’ and women’s team.
But the club is now awaiting news about a Football Association of Wales grant, which, if it gets the go-ahead, will pay for a new artificial all-weather pitch at the club’s Memorial Playing Fields at Parc Y Dre.
The new facility will replace the training field, not the first-team pitch.
The club currently spends hundreds of pounds every season travelling to Holywell to train.
But it’s also hoped the new sports facility will bring in revenue and offer the community a state-of-the-art facility.
An application to Denbighshire County Council for planning consent has now been approved, strengthening the grant bid.
If the funding is successful, Ruthin Town FC will replace the grass pitch with ’50mm green Tiger Turf synthetic carpet’. Metal rebound fencing will also be erected as part of the development as well as 1.2m-high ‘spectator fencing’.
The pitch will then be used for training and by the town’s hockey, cricket and rugby teams.
Richard Goldstone is club secretary and was excited about the plans.
“It’s probably more of a community-based 3G we are trying to put in,” he said.
“So it’s not just for the football club. It’s for cricket, for schools to use. We hire our pitch out to the fire service. We have the Urdd coming down in April for a tournament. It could potentially help raise revenue for the club, but that’s not the idea of it.
“It’s more for mini football as the youth have got very little training areas – the leisure centre is overcrowded.
“It’s fantastic for the club and fantastic for the local community. Everyone is excited about it.”
He added: “We’ve applied for the grant. We haven’t heard back. We’ve got our fingers crossed.”
Andy Lewis is the chair of the mini and junior teams and said the facility depended on the grant application.
“The only nervousness we have around it is that it’s all at the mercy of funding,” he said.
“We’ve put together what we think is a strong application to get the funding as part of a community partnership. But we don’t want to get people’s hopes up. It’s very much in the balance of the funding panel.”