Football: Sheffield junior football club Norton Woodseats appeals for help with HQ refurb
Norton Woodeats FC, the largest junior football club in Sheffield, has launched an ambitious project to convert Olive Grove Sports Club into a new headquarters.
The task has begun at pace and many volunteers are helping out. But extra funding is required to help complete the job.
Norton Woodseats chairman Paul Rodgers said there were 250 boys and girls up to the age of 18 who played for the club, which was formed just three years ago
He said: "Our aim has been to provide affordable football for all, particularly given that we are situated in the middle of some of Sheffield’s less affluent areas, including the Gleadless Valley and Arbourthorne.
"With the rising costs of playing for a football club, it can be difficult for families in this area, and some kids therefore sadly miss out."
Norton Woodseats had asked for funding from the FA and the Football Foundation for grant money to help them develop a base.
Rodgers said: "We were told that if we were able to raise £250,000 then they would match it. But it would take years and years to get anywhere near raising that kind of cash and the site is in need of a refurb urgently."
Instead, the club, with its 60 volunteers, decided to do the work themselves.
Support has come from local businesses and tradesmen within the club's circle of parents and friends.
Paul said: "MKM Builders being our biggest backer - pledging all the materials for the clubhouse refurbishment.
“They have been nothing short of remarkable with their generosity. Other agencies, such as Biffa waste removal and the Spraycentre, plus a CCTV company and carpet companies, have also pledged their help, which is just fantastic."
It is hoped to convert the first floor of the venue into to a sports bar and to have a 'chill out room’ for youngsters and a games room.
Paul added: "We do still need quite a bit donating to help us achieve Phase 1 of our project.
"Our Phase 2 plan will be to revamp and resurface our all-weather pitch while Phase 3 is to level the field and enhance it with our very own cafe."To complete the clubhouse renovations, we still need flooring, lighting, soft furnishings, tiles for the new toilets - plus tables and seating which would complement a modern sports bar.
“In addition, we also need tradesmen - mainly joiners, plasterers, painters & decorators to help us get the bar/kids zone up and running as quickly as we possibly can.”If anyone can help, chairman Paul Rodgers can be contacted on 07568 711215.