FA launch pitch improvement plan

15:30 11 March 2016

The FA have launched a four-year, £8 million Pitch Improvement Programme (PIP) to enhance grass football surfaces across the country, delivering upgrades to more than 2,000 pitches. (pic: Essex FA).

The FA have launched a four-year, £8 million Pitch Improvement Programme (PIP) to enhance grass football surfaces across the country, delivering upgrades to more than 2,000 pitches. (pic: Essex FA).


Effort underway to improve grass pitches across England

The Football Association have launched a four-year £8 million Pitch Improvement Programme (PIP) to enhance grass football surfaces across the country, delivering upgrades to more than 2,000 pitches.

With pitch improvement being a central pillar of the organisation’s 2015-19 Strategy for Participation and Development, PIP will provide a range of support services to grassroots clubs, club volunteers and groundsmen, including on-site evaluations with practical advice and recommendations.

It will also include a range of measures to help develop the skills and knowledge of the volunteers and groundsmen, including seminars and workshops. In partnership with Sport England and other governing bodies, The FA has also developed a dedicated website - - where details for accessing help can be found.

The FA have appointed two industry partners, Redexim Charterhouse and Rigby Taylor, who will assist in the rollout by supplying FA-affiliated grassroots clubs with discounted products and materials and by supporting training workshops.

One of the great challenges that many clubs in grassroots football face is that currently in England, 83% of pitches are publicly owned and, as austerity measures kick in, local authority budgets are increasingly being squeezed. Funds for pitch maintenance are often at risk as councils are forced to prioritise essential services.

In addition to the commitment to improve grass pitches, The FA has also pledged to spend £36 million on facility improvements and new developments directly through the Premier League and FA Facilities Fund, managed by the Football Foundation.

Kelly Simmons, FA Director for Participation and Development, said: “Last winter we asked people from across grassroots football what they felt would make playing football better.

“Nearly 30,000 people gave us their view. Amongst the vast majority the answer was remarkably similar - supporting clubs to improve their pitches. We have committed to investing a total of £260 million in addressing the problem of poor quality facilities and improving grassroots coaching by 2019.”

The official roll out of the PIP follows extensive piloting which has already seen £1 million invested and over 800 visits to grassroots football pitches by trained experts. Mark Pover, The FA’s National Facilities Manager, added: “PIP has already proven to be a tremendous resource for many grassroots clubs.

“Through the introduction of new technologies, The FA is able to develop local investment strategies and continue talking directly with clubs about the state of the facilities they use, providing dedicated programmes to help with improvements.

“This also gives us an early warning of pitch conditions and pitches under threat of development, strengthening our hand when it comes to challenging closures and maintenance programmes.”

If you’re looking to improve your football facilities, which could involve refurbishing and improving changing rooms, natural grass or 3G artificial turf pitches, the first step in the process is to use the ‘Grant Finder’ facility.

Visit for details. Information is also shared on Twitter @EssexCountyFA and by searching for ‘EssexFootball’ on Facebook.


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Romford Recorder visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Romford Recorder staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Romford Recorder account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Romford Sports News

20 minutes ago
Elliot Justham of Dagenham & Redbridge kept a clean sheet against Aldershot Town (pic: David Simpson/TGS Photo)

Ned Keating provides player ratings following the 1-0 National League win at home to Aldershot Town

Slaven Bilic at his Press Conference at Rush Green

Hammers manager Slaven Bilic is expecting a big London derby against the Blues

Corey Whitely of Dagenham & Redbridge is congratulated after scoring against Aldershot Town (pic: David Simpson/TGS Photo)

Daggers boss overjoyed with how season is progression following Shots victory

West Ham legend Tony Cottee

Our West Ham columnist says the police must be there to protect supporters inside the London Stadium

Leon McKenzie netted a hat-trick in Hornchurch's win at Enfield Town (pic George Phillipou/TGS Photo)

Enfield Town 1 Hornchurch 4

Yesterday, 21:38
Corey Whitely of Dagenham & Redbridge and Idris Kanu of Aldershot Town (pic: David Simpson/TGS Photo)

National League: Dagenham & Redbridge 1 (Whitely 80) Aldershot Town 0

Yesterday, 19:00
NBA Crossover is a cultural exhibition in London displaying the convergence of the NBA and popular culture through the ages (pic: Pitch).

Steve Nash will make an appearance at free event in Shoreditch to show support for exhibition in partnership with NBA 2K17 and Foot Locker

Yesterday, 16:30
Fejiri Okenabirhie of Dagenham & Redbridge is treated against Macclesfield Town (pic: David Simpson/TGS Photo)

Daggers winger picked up a nasty injury against Macclesfield Town at the weekend

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read sport


Show Job Lists

News from your area


Click on the banner above for full coverage of the centenary commemorations of the outbreak of the First World War.


£3,000 goes a long way at Boots

Cosmetics, toiletries, vitamins and more. Boots is the number one choice when it comes to purchasing daily essentials.

Kit yourself out and go Apple mad!

If you’re obsessed with Apple or just love a good gadget, this is a prize that will blow you away! An incredible £3,333 to spend on Apple goodies! How would you like to be the proud new owner of the Apple Watch?

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Romford Recorder
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now