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Imps stars are guests of honour at 3G pitch ceremony

 Work has officially kicked off on a new third generation (3G) artificial grass pitch (AGP) at The Priory City of Lincoln Academy.

The floodlit facility was made possible thanks to a £250,000 grant awarded by the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund, a figure that was matched and topped up by The Priory Federation of Academies Trust.

Guests of honour at a special event to mark the occasion were Lincoln City FC manager Gary Simpson and assistant manager Grant Brown, together with Imps striker Conner Robinson – a former pupil of the Academy.

When complete, the facility will be suitable for use in all-weather conditions and marked out for both 11-a-side and five-a-side matches. It will not only support pupils at the Academy and Federation during the school day, but will be available for hire for players and teams from across the city during evenings, weekends and school holidays – supporting local grassroots teams including partner clubs, Birchwood Juniors and Greenbank.

 The Academy worked in partnership with Lincolnshire FA to secure a £250,000 grant from the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund.

The Priory Trust agreed to contribute the remainder of the funding from its central reserves in order to support sporting participation by young people in its academies and the wider community.

Academy Headteacher Mrs Hopkinson said: “We are extremely grateful to the Trust and to the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund for making this development possible. It is fantastic to see such progress being made and we can’t wait for the pitch to be open and in use – it will dramatically improve access to grassroots sport for our students and for thousands of people in the city.”

Funded by the Premier League, The FA, and the Government, via Sport England, the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund is delivered by the Football Foundation, the country’s largest sports charity. Since it was launched in 2000, the Foundation has supported more than 12,000 grassroots projects worth over £1 billion.

Click here for 3G pitch booking information.

Since 2000 the Football Foundation funding partners’ investment has provided 110 grants worth over £10m towards grassroots sports projects worth £26m across the whole of Lincolnshire.

By providing more high-quality facilities, coupled with coaching at the appropriate age group, the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund is helping to improve participation, and to increase the footballing talent pool across the country. Many of the new state-of-the-art facilities will serve to strengthen the connection between professional football clubs and their local communities, particularly in the most deprived areas of the country, through the professional clubs’ community trusts’ outreach work.

It is expected that the new pitch – which is being built by Charles Lawrence Surfaces Ltd of Newark – will be completed and ready for use by the summer. Click here to see a gallery of photos from the VIP event.

    The Priory Federation of Academies, Lincoln