Knights unveil new £120k facilities

Newspaper: Wakefield Express.
Story: Normanton Knights RLFC officially open the new changing rooms and facilities. 
Pictured: Former Knights players/members L to R) Oliver Holmes - Castleford Tigers and England International Ben Westwood, sat in one of the new changing rooms.
Reporter: Alex Beard.
Photographer: Andrew Bellis
email: andrewbellisphotography@gmail.com
Twitter: @SnapperAndrewB
Mobile: 07885 426 523
Photo date: 08/02/17
Picture ref: AB038ax0217
Newspaper: Wakefield Express. Story: Normanton Knights RLFC officially open the new changing rooms and facilities. Pictured: Former Knights players/members L to R) Oliver Holmes - Castleford Tigers and England International Ben Westwood, sat in one of the new changing rooms. Reporter: Alex Beard. Photographer: Andrew Bellis email: andrewbellisphotography@gmail.com Twitter: @SnapperAndrewB Mobile: 07885 426 523 Photo date: 08/02/17 Picture ref: AB038ax0217

An historic rugby league club welcomed two special guests as it unveiled its plush new facilities.

Normanton Knights officially opened their new £120,000 changing rooms and invited along two former junior players.

Ben Westwood, now of Warrington Wolves and England, and Castleford Tigers’ Oliver Holmes were guests of honour at the grand opening.

The revamp was funded thanks to funding supplied by Sport England, Wren, RFL Facilities Trust and Wakefield Council.

Work has seen four separate changing facilities created for both male and females plus different age groups as opposed to one shared facility beforehand.

Neil Durant, facilities officer at the Knights, said: “The facilities that we had before were nearly 25 years old and they were constructed in the days when people would share baths.

“Obviously times change and the facilities that we have now are secure and much more usable.

“The problem with amateur clubs is that money is needed to keep it going.

“In my role, I’ve spent two-and-a-half years trying to push this through so it’s nice to finally see it happen.

“For Ben and Oliver to come here, it gives the kids something to aspire towards.

“A lot of rugby league players go back to their old clubs and it’s nice of them to lend their time.”

Neil now hopes that more women and girls are tempted to join the club in the future.

He added: “We are trying to open a junior girls’ section and we also want to develop the women’s side of the sport here.”