Steve Bull MBE, former England and Wolverhampton Wanderers FC striker, opened a state-of-the-art third generation (3G) artificial grass pitch (AGP) in Walsall today (Tuesday 13 June 2017).
The brand new floodlit 3G AGP will provide a home for Walsall Wood Saints JFC, who previously played and trained at four different venues across the county. The club, formerly known as Shire Oak Saints JFC, has teams ranging from Under-6 to Under-18 level and recently merged with Walsall Wood FC. This merger, coupled with the opening of the all-weather pitch, has seen overall team numbers grow to 28.
The new pitch is already hosting competitive matches for Walsall College, the Staffordshire Veterans League and Rushall Olympic of the Junior Premier League. Several other grassroots clubs are also using the new pitch including: Brownhills Colts; Pelsall Villa Colts and A
Victoria. From September 2017, the Walsall Junior Youth League will be using the pitch as a centre for their 5v5 and 7v7 matches.
The project has already forged links with the Albion Foundation, the charitable arm of Premier League side West Bromwich Albion, who are delivering their Baggies Soccer Centre on Saturday mornings. This initiative provides local youngsters with a pathway into Walsall Wood Saints JFC’s Under-6 and Under-7 teams.
Additionally, Walsall Council delivers weekly Walking Football sessions at the new facility, for men aged over the age of 50. These sessions encourage participants to enjoy the social aspects of the game, whilst also experiencing the benefits of weekly exercise.
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