State of the art sports pitches will be open by September in Estover Road, March

PUBLISHED: 17:23 16 July 2018 | UPDATED: 10:31 17 July 2018

Work has started at Estover playing fields in March on a new sports hub for the town. Picture(s): HARRY RUTTER

Work has started at Estover playing fields in March on a new sports hub for the town. Picture(s): HARRY RUTTER

HARRY RUTTER

Work has officially started on a new sports hub for March with state of the art pitches and a pavilion for clubs and private hire.

Estover playing field Estover playing field

The pitches for five-a-side football, netball, basketball and tennis, will be ready by September while the pavilion, with changing rooms, bar and meeting room, should be ready by Spring 2019.

The news has been welcomed by councillors who say it will put March on the map as a serious venue for good sporting facilities for the community.

Councillor Steve Count, leader of Cambridgeshire County Council, said: “This now belongs to the people of March.

“This is a well overdue facility, it’s been years coming but we can now all make best use of this.”

Councillor Kit Owen pictured cutting the first sod - Work has started at Estover playing fields in March on a new sports hub for the town. Picture(s): HARRY RUTTERCouncillor Kit Owen pictured cutting the first sod - Work has started at Estover playing fields in March on a new sports hub for the town. Picture(s): HARRY RUTTER

“I know of people whose parents lobbied for this 30 years ago.”

Councillor Jan French said: ”It’s fantastic for March. We hope it can be used as meeting rooms, conferences, for businesses and local community events.

“Parking will be improved, there will be plenty of room and a footpath is being created with special area for dog walkers.

“When I was first a councillor in August 1990 it was the first thing I was asked, now 28 years later it has happened.”

Councillor Kit Owen pictured cutting the first sod - Work has started at Estover playing fields in March on a new sports hub for the town. Picture(s): HARRY RUTTERCouncillor Kit Owen pictured cutting the first sod - Work has started at Estover playing fields in March on a new sports hub for the town. Picture(s): HARRY RUTTER

The land is being rented to the Estover Playing Field Trust at the nominal sum of £1 for 99 years

Councillor Kit Owen said: “It has been a lot of work behind the scenes by many people, all worth it.”

Councillor Martin Field said: “It’s great to see new facilities at a time when so many local services are being scut. It is great news for March.”

Local builders Simon Rutterford, Lee Batchelor and March business, Artificial Grass Cambridge, have the contract for the work providing jobs for around 15 people from the area during the construction phase.

A further £300,000 is needed to complete interior work to the Pavilion, but Cllr Count assured people the venue would still open and be ready to use without that additional funding.

A survey seven years ago showed that for a town the size of March it has less than half of the pitches expected for the population size.

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