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Planning permission approved for new grassroots sports facilities

25 April 2024

Plans for a new sports and community facility at Preston's Ashton Park have been approved.

The green light was given to the £9.7 million project, paving the way for a state-of-the-art sports facility. This development will feature a two-storey 1,395 sq. m sports hub complete with changing rooms, classrooms and a café, alongside six grass pitches and a 3G sports pitch.

Approval was granted during the planning meeting held on Thursday 25 April.

Adrian Robinson, Director of Environment and Property at Preston City Council said:

"We're pleased with the approval of this valuable sports facility. It will allow for all year-round access to sports. This new community hub will deliver a range of services and improve the quality of life for local residents, community sports clubs and the wider Preston community."

The project will be funded by a £9.5 million contribution from the £20m of Levelling Up Funding, which was awarded to Preston City Council in 2023, having pledged to create improved sports facilities as part of the local bid.

The new facility is part of the city's Active Preston project, designed to encourage more people in the city to participate in healthy activities and improve the wellbeing of Preston residents. It will enable thousands of young people year-round access to both natural and all-weather sport facilities and improve the local provision for playing grassroots sports.

Eric Wright Construction will oversee the design and construction of the facility with Cassidy and Ashton doing the planning on the scheme. Work is planned to commence on site in summer 2024 targeting completion by the end of 2025.

James Eager, director of Eric Wright Construction added:

"We're really pleased to have the approval from the planning committee for Ashton Park and we aim to start on site later this year. This new facility will provide a superb additional leisure and education amenity for the community, enhancing the sports provision in the local area and improving health outcomes.

The park has been underused for many years but the new facilities will enable youngsters to play grassroots sports all year round and the team is keen to bring this forward now planning is secured."

Additional Information

Preston's Levelling Up Fund bid titled - 'Active Preston: Transforming our Community Infrastructure' will bring real quality of life, health and wellbeing benefits to its residents and have many positive impacts for communities across Preston.

Visit £20 million Levelling up cash boost for Preston to view other projects funded by the Levelling Up Fund. 

Preston City Council actively applies and prioritises the principles of Community Wealth Building wherever applicable and appropriate. Community Wealth Building is an approach which aims to ensure the economic system builds wealth and prosperity for everyone.