Funding goal scored for all new clubhouse

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Match days will soon be much better for Thornes Juniors football club after they finally reached their fundraising goal for a new clubhouse.

The club, which has a membership of almost 300, has been working hard to raise £203,000 needed for the clubhouse that will replace the temporary metal buildings they have used as changing rooms and toilet blocks for years.

This week the Football Foundation confirmed it would match the £100,000 the club had already raised in grants from Sport England and WREN (Waste Recycling Environmental), which, added to money it has raised through raffles, bag-packs and race nights, gives them their total.

Club secretary Brian Wilcox said: “It’s absolutely brilliant news and it means that building work can start in a few weeks. We seem to have been fundraising forever.

“It’ll be nice to have a decent facility that’s nice and warm and we hope it will attract new players too.”

The new clubhouse will have a changing room, toilets, a kitchen area and community room, which local groups and organisations will be able to make use of.

The building work is expected to take three months to complete.

Mr Wilcox added: “Everyone is really looking forward to it. A lot of people have put a lot of hard work in.”

The club moved to the site in 1996, but had never been able to raise the funds for the new facilities.

An initial bid for lottery funding failed in 1994, and the club suffered a series of subsequent funding knock-backs.

But the Olympics gave the club the boost it needed, when the games led to the £50,000 windfall it received from sport England’s Inspired Facilities Fund in July last year.

It is part of the London 2012 Inspire programme funded by the National Lottery.

Money came flooding in after that with a £47,000 grant from WREN in September 2012.

The club plans to celebrate with a grand opening ceremony, which will include a reunion of the original Thornes Junior team from October 1990.

For more information call Brian Wilcox on 07050 047209.