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East Grinstead Town FC - Major Pitch Improvement Project

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East Grinstead Town FC will be able to undergo a major pitch improvement project thanks to the support of the Football Foundation. The Foundation have awarded the club a grant of £80,219 towards the £115,877 cost of the project which will see new drainage and irrigation systems installed on the pitch at East Court, with work due to begin as soon as it is safe to do so amidst the coronavirus crisis. The remainder of the cost will be covered by a Facilities Grant from Mid Sussex District Council and donations.

The ambitious project will see the existing pitch removed and a new primary drainage system installed to replace the existing one which was laid nearly 20 years ago. The upgrade will continue with the installation of secondary drainage in the form of excavated sand bands, a pop-up irrigation system including infield sprinklers, water storage tank, pump and controller.

The club have contacted the contractor who is waiting for an easing of the current restrictions so they can start work as soon as it is safe to do so under Government guidelines.

Chairman Richard Tramontin said: “We’re really pleased that the Football Foundation are supporting us in this ambitious project to further improve our facilities. We already have one of the best set-ups off the pitch in the Isthmian League and we now think we’ll have one of the best pitches as well. We are seeing much greater vagaries in the weather with long dry spells and then periods of intensive rain."

"We had a lot of games postponed this season because our drainage wasn’t good enough and not playing does not help us be financially sustainable. Similarly, we will be able to irrigate the pitch better during the dry months."

“Having a top-quality pitch will help us attract better players and we’ll be able to offer the pitch to our youth teams more often. We can also strengthen our links with Crawley Wasps Ladies FC, who used East Court before the season was abandoned. Our aim is to have the best grass pitch in the area.”

The Football Stadia Improvement Fund (FSIF) is funded by the Premier League. Its purpose is to support clubs within the National League System to ensure they meet the FA ground grading criteria of their league, comply with health and safety requirements and to promote club sustainability.

East Grinstead Town FC have benefitted from Foundation funding before to complete spectator improvements and new changing rooms prior to their promotion to the Isthmian League in 2014.

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