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New pitch at Abbey Sports Centre

Abbey Sports Centre in Berinsfield now boasts a brand new 3G Artificial Turf Pitch for playing 5-a-side football, thanks to an investment of nearly £180,000.

The pitch, which is owned by South Oxfordshire District Council, has replaced a surface which was laid in 2009 and was no longer playable.

This refurbishment work brings the pitch up to current sporting standards and will also require less maintenance than before. This type of surface improves safety for those using it and is more eco-friendly as it doesn’t require chemicals or any treatment.

As well as working on the pitch surface the site now has new LED lighting, better fencing and drainage around the pitch has also been improved.

Work on the new ATP started in October last year and was completed earlier this week. The new pitch and other improvement work to the site cost £179,647. This was funded through the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) – which is the contribution paid by developers as part of the conditions attached to the granting of new planning permissions. Oxfordshire County Council also contributed as the authority for schools in the county as part of their Joint Use Agreement.

The 3G stands for a Third-Generation synthetic surface which consists of three elements: synthetic turf, sand infill and rubber infill.

Cllr Maggie Filipova-Rivers Cabinet Member for Community Wellbeing said: “It’s great that we’re able to continue updating and improving the facilities at Abbey Sports Centre. Good quality facilities really improve the experience of playing sport which benefits the wellbeing and enjoyment of our residents and the range of sports and exercise options available at the centre.”

Cllr Robin Bennett Cabinet Member for Economic Development and Regeneration and the ward member for Berinsfield said: “I know that this new pitch is going to get a lot of use. It looks impressive and the fact that it will require less maintenance and helps the environment as it doesn’t need treating with chemicals is a win-win. I hope to play a game myself here in the future.”

The pitch is now ready for use and can be booked via the Better UK website, app or through the centre.

This work is just one of the projects that have taken place to improve facilities at Abbey Sports Centre and other Better UK centres across South Oxfordshire. Work to renew the sports hall floor at Abbey Sports Centre will start this year.

Cllr Robin Bennett and Cllr Maggie Filipova-Rivers at the new ATP at Abbey Sports Centre