Developing Facilities to Develop the Game
INVESTING IN THE FUTURE OF THE GRASSROOTS GAMEThe FA is committed to improving football facilities at all levels of the game and provides guidance to all clubs in the National Game, including info and guidance on correct pitch sizes, goalpost dimensions, outline maintenance plans, performance standards, design information and technical guidance.
Hampshire FA are proud to run three fantastic sites across Hampshire that supports grassroots football.
Click on the boxes below to find out information about our facilities
If you are intending to improve your football facilities (which may involve 3G football turf pitches, changing room pavilions / clubhouses, grass pitch improvements or better indoor / outdoor spaces) please contact Sacha Nicholas, Facilities and Investment Manager at Hampshire FA on 01256 853018 or by emailing Sacha Nicholas so that we can prove advice and guidance.
Following this, you may be asked to complete an Expression of Interest (EOI) form which can be found here.
Please note if you have already started work on your project (for example, building/construction has already begun), then it is unlikely that your project will be eligible for funding.
Facilities - Clubs
The Groundsman of the Year (GOTY) competition is a great way for volunteers to be awarded for their voluntary hours in ensuring that the pitch is well maintained in preparation for games. The top 3 grounds within Hampshire will receive the following recognition:
1. Be invited to attend the Hampshire FA Grassroots Awards Evening.
2. All 3 winners will receive a tour of a professional ground.
3. All 3 winners will receive line-marking equipment from Hampshire FA's sponsors, Fleet Line Markers.
Hampshire FA are consulted by Sport England on the loss of any playing fields through the National Planning process; Hampshire FA will therefore consult with clubs on any issues identified. We also work closely with Hampshire Playing Fields Association whose remit is also to protect the playing fields and to provide small grants.
Hampshire FA's Facilities & Investment Manager, Sacha Nicholas is also the National Governing Body representative on the Hampshire Playing Fields Association Board.
The emergence of Artificial Grass Pitches (AGPs) and in particular 3G Football Turf Pitches (FTPs) has impacted significantly on the way football is played and delivered throughout the country. FTPs offer a quality playing surface throughout the year, allowing for increased opportunities for training and match competition at all levels and ages. In a wider context and when delivered against a strategic setting such as a school site, they enhance curricular activity and provide quality playing opportunities for the wider community.
The FA has changed the Standard Code of Rules regarding the use of FTP’s that will now allow more clubs and teams to use these types of pitches. The rules have become effective from 2014/15 season and provided a FTP has been tested and appears on The FA Register it will be allowed to be used for affiliated match play in all competitions outside the National League System (NLS) i.e. Step 7 and below including Women’s and Youth Football.
Click here for The FA 3G Football Turf Pitch Register.
With the Institute of Groundsmanship (IOG) and The FA, Hampshire FA run a pitch maintenance programme where you can book a visit with an experienced groundsman to assess the current condition of your pitch and maintenance equipment and offer suggestions for improvement. If you are interested in booking a visit, please contact the Facilities & Investment Manager, Sacha Nicholas: Sacha.Nicholas@HampshireFA.com.
Please click here for the contact details of our regional pitch advisor.
One of the recommendations from a visit will include advise on future maintenance; if you need a specialist contractor for the works required, our commercial partners at Southern Ground Care may support you with this. Hampshire FA can also support with guidance on pitch maintenance through bespoke workshops; the first workshop that was held took place at Winklebury, Basingstoke in relation to winter maintenance.
Improvements to facilities in the National League System are an important part of the sustainability and development of clubs wishing to adhere to the standards and requirements of The FA’s Ground Grading.
The FA Regional Managers, in conjunction with leagues within the National League System undertake a schedule of annual Ground Grading visits at Grade E and above. These visits are to ensure compliance with the grade currently played at and are carried out on a three-year cyclical basis. Ground Grading is also undertaken to identify works required for those club who may anticipate promotion to the next step at the end of a season. As such is it vitally important that clubs who are successful on the pitch maintain the same level of detail and investment into their facilities.
The FA advocates the implementation of a Facilities Development Plan for all clubs within the National League System. Reference to the Facilities Development Plan will assist clubs in identifying the necessary standards required for progressing to the next level. Ground inspections often reveal poor quality standards as a result of the lack of maintenance. This can lead to a range of defects affecting the function and performance of facilities which may result in a Club not achieving the required Grade. The Facilities Development Plan provides information on the implementation of a maintenance programme, helping to reduce potential longer term defects. As such short-term investment can reduce maintenance costs in the longer term.
Click here for all Ground Grading documents on The FA's website.
For clubs who need funding support for ground grading there are two options, the Football Stadia Improvement fund and the Hampshire FA Senior Clubs fund, for more details please click here or see the enclosed document at the bottom of the page.
Please contact the Facilities & Investment Manager, Sacha Nicholas for more details.
Funding is also available through the Football Foundation small grants scheme to purchase ground maintenance equipment following advice from a visit. If it is determined that your pitch needs new drainage, you will need to have an independent agronomists report done to assess the extent of works and the costs involved. There is currently no funding available for routine maintenance. Click here for The FA Pitch Improvement Programme.
Click here for the funding & grants page on Hampshire FA's website. You can also click here to view Energise Me's funding page.