Club takes Barnstaple pitch appeal to council

16:01 03 October 2012

Eastside AFC chairman Stuart Locke, pictured with young players Darcey and Jasper Locke and Alex Pester, and petition supporters, made the case for a youth football pitch in Newport to North Devon Councillors.

Eastside AFC chairman Stuart Locke, pictured with young players Darcey and Jasper Locke and Alex Pester, and petition supporters, made the case for a youth football pitch in Newport to North Devon Councillors.

Archant

Youth football supporters petition for funds to develop area of public open space.

PARENTS and players of a Barnstaple youth football team have made a compelling case for a new pitch to North Devon Councillors.

Eastside AFC supporters have submitted a 1,059-signiture petition to the council, asking the authority to release £25,000 of developer contributions to transform an area of public open space off Old School Road in Newport.

On Wednesday week, club chairman and under-12s manager Stuart Locke made a passionate plea to council members.

He said the ‘growing’ club currently supported teams from four age groups but hoped to be able to provide affordable football for every age group from under-16s and below.

“Youth football needs intermediate-sized football pitches in Barnstaple,” he said.

“To enable us to cover every age group we would need two full-sized pitches and two intermediate-sized pitches.

“The site at Newport was always a sports field up until the 1980s so let’s get it back in shape; a well-maintained open sports field for the youth in our community to enjoy along with local residents.

“We are not proposing to acquire sole usage, only simply to share this public open space with the people of all ages in the local area of Newport.

“We should all be encouraging children into sports. Over the summer London hosted a very successful Olympic and Paralympic Games and one of the main aims was to inspire a generation into sport, so let’s do this.”

Newport councillor John Matthews said there were ‘complex’ issues regarding the district-council-owned site, including problems with drainage, as well as objections from some local residents about noise and parking.

He called for a full report before any decision is made to release funding.

Fellow ward member Cllr Mike Harrison said that despite assurances that Newport school had already given the go-ahead for use of its car park on match days, he still had concerns over whether people would actually park there.

“I’m undecided about it,” he said. “There is a danger that we’re going to be caught piggy in the middle here.”

After the meeting, Mr Locke said all North Devon youth football clubs followed the FA Respect Campaign and that the days of abusive parents on the sidelines had long gone.

“The only noise that there will be is the sound of an occasional whistle and of children enjoying themselves,” he said.

“In terms of parking, it would be me that arranges the fixtures and people would be told to park in the school. There would be a clear sign.

“The drainage issue is something that needs to be sorted out regardless.”

The council resolved to prepare a report for the overview and scrutiny committee.

0 comments

Other News Stories

Yesterday, 16:11
North Devon's election candidates busy answering YOUR questions at Gazette HQ.

Join our LIVE North Devon online election hustings from 7pm - 9pm tonight (Thursday) and get your questions answered.

Read more
Yesterday, 19:00
Rodney Cann will stand as a Conservative in the May local elections. Picture: Tony Gussin

Deputy leader of district council will stand for the party he was deselected from at the last election.

Read more
Yesterday, 13:14
Waterloo House in Lynton is believed to be the oldest boarding house in the village.

The Grade II listed Waterloo House dates back to 1828 - and is on the market as a bed and breakfast.

Read more
Yesterday, 12:53
School governors and pupils at the opening of phase two of the Chulmleigh project in September 2014

Good news for North Devon as minister makes Condition Improvement Fund announcement

Read more
Yesterday, 11:02

Silver Peugeot in collision near Two Potts

Read more
Yesterday, 09:44
Newport head teacher Andrew Cotton with members of the school’s leadership team, Mo Cann, Sue Gibson and Gillian Courtenay are pictured with pupils representing every year group at the school. Picture: Andy Keeble

Barnstaple primary school earns top praise from Ofsted inspectors.

Read more
Yesterday, 09:24
The North Devon and Torridge Green Party launched their election campaign this week

North Devon and Torridge candidates and members come together at Tapeley Park

Read more
Yesterday, 09:24
Fire engines2

Fire fighters scrambled to Bridgeland Street after reports of alarms sounding and smell of smoke.

Read more
Yesterday, 09:05
John Balls, the new chairman of North Devon Fishermen's Association.

We caught up with John Balls, the new chairman of North Devon Fishermen’s Association, to see what he thinks about the future of the industry locally...

Read more
Yesterday, 09:00
Sam and Gert-Jan Elshout at their new Ilfracombe pancake bar.

GJ’s Pancake Bar in Wilder Road opens on Saturday, March 28 after expanding the business from Woolacombe.

Read more

Local Weather

Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 8°C

min temp: 7°C

Most Read News

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
Competitions
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Family Notices 24

Digital Edition

Image
Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition today E-edition



North Devon's trusted business finder