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Extra £105,000 funding from East Cambridgeshire District Council will pay for new village recreation ground

A funding gap of £105,000 to create a new recreation ground in Haddenham will be met by East Cambridgeshire District Council.

The authority previously agreed to provide £200,000 towards the project, but will now increase its funding after the plans were expanded and grant funding from elsewhere was reduced.

More football pitches will be created in Haddenham
More football pitches will be created in Haddenham

Haddenham Parish Council has been leading the project to create the new recreation ground to offer more football pitches to meet demand.

A report to the district council’s finance and assets committee on March 30 said the plans had changed since the initial funding was awarded.

It said the proposed pavilion had been designed to have better disabled access, and the car park had been expanded from 30 spaces to 70. It added that there was also now a requirement for the New Town road access to be improved.

The report explained that grant funding from the Football Foundation had been reduced from £595,000 to £500,000 after it changed the way it invests in projects.

The parish council had increased the amount of money it was investing into the project from £66,000 to £90,000, and had been able to get £20,000 of funding from organisations in the area.

However, the report said there was still a shortfall of £105,000, which the district council has now agreed to fund.

Cllr Ian Bovingdon (Con, Soham South) said the parish council and the community had done “fantastic work” on the project.

Cllr Bill Hunt (Con, Stretham) said it was “refreshing” to see a community get together to work on the project to create new sport fields, and said he wanted to send Haddenham his “best wishes and congratulations” as well as the funding.

Cllr John Trapp (Lib Dem, Bottisham) said he thought it was a “sad reflection” on the Football Foundation that it had reduced its grant funding, and said it was “absolutely essential” the project progressed.

When the decision was put to a vote the committee voted unanimously in favour of providing the additional funding.

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