Sports clubs merge to form East Bierley community association

Birkenshaw Bluedogs, Hunsworth AFC and East Bierley AFC have merged to form the community sports association.
Birkenshaw Bluedogs, Hunsworth AFC and East Bierley AFC have merged to form the community sports association.

Three local sports clubs have joined together to form a major new association in East Bierley.

Birkenshaw Bluedogs, Hunsworth AFC and East Bierley AFC, joined forces to form the East Bierley Community Sports Association Ltd in a bid to secure funding and investment for much needed new changing facilities at East Bierley playing fields.

After successfully going through a rigorous and lengthy application process, East Bierley Community Sports Association secured funding from Sport England and the Football Stadia Improvement Fund that will go toward the cost of building the new facilities.

However, the balance of the capital needed will come from a £175,000 loan from Kirklees Council, which has been agreed over a 20 year period along with the asset transfer of the grounds which EBCSA have now agreed as a 125-year lease.

East Bierley playing fields, which is used by all three clubs for home fixtures and training, provides sporting facilities to more than 250 participants, sees more than 4,000 hours of free coaching per year, and welcomes more than 22,000 visitors and spectators to watch the individual clubs’ games.

EBCSA secretary and Birkenshaw Bluedogs club secretary Simon Armitage said: “Securing funding and agreeing investment with Kirklees Council has been a real labour of love for everybody involved over the past three years.

“The sports facilities at East Bierley are used by hundreds of people every year but the changing rooms are in a state where they’re simply not fit for use anymore. All three clubs were going to have to either move site or dissolve the clubs due to lack of facilities.

“We are absolutely ecstatic that the funding, investment, and loan has all been secured and building work can begin on new modern facilities.

“The coming together of these three teams goes to show how strong our community is in and around Birkenshaw, East Bierley and Hunsworth and we have shown that we are stronger together.”

Local construction firm Britannia Ltd are to commence work imminently.

Anyone who would like to assist with the much needed fund raising for the new facility can contact enquiries@ebcsa.co.uk.