New 3G football pitch in Gillingham is open to residents

Published: Friday, 27th August 2021

A new full size 3G football pitch in Gillingham has opened for residents to enjoy.

Watling Park Football Centre in Darland Avenue, opened earlier this month.

Medway Council teamed up with the Football Foundation and Anchorians Football Club to build the new pitch to further support grassroots football in Medway. The council contributed £400,000 and received a £900,000 grant from the Football Foundation.

Watling Park Football Centre, which also includes changing facilities due to be completed later this year, will be maintained by the council alongside Anchorians Football Club and is open from 10am to 10pm on weekdays and between 10am and 8pm at weekends. The pitch is floodlit for evening use.

Local teams, football groups and residents can book the pitch on the website, or by emailing watlingparkfootball@medway.gov.uk.

Cllr Howard Doe, Medway Council’s Portfolio Holder for Community Services, said: “I am pleased that the new 3G pitch in Darland Avenue has been completed and that residents will soon able to book to use the pitch. Medway has fantastic football facilities for residents of all ages and abilities including the purpose-built 3G Soccer Centre in Strood and now they have even more choice with Watling Park Football Centre. The full-size football pitch will provide local residents, including young people and children, with further opportunities to keep active. The new pitch supports Medway’s aspiration to become a Child-Friendly City, putting children and young people at the heart of everything it does.”

Robert Sullivan, Chief Executive of the Football Foundation, said: “We are delighted that Watling Park Football Centre is now open to the public after receiving Football Foundation investment. Good quality facilities support the health of local people and communities, which is why we’re investing in projects like this across the country with funding provided by the Premier League, The FA, Government and Sport England.”

Leigh Willis, Anchorians Football Club Chairperson, said: “As an England Football Accredited Community Club that is a fully inclusive and provides opportunities to participate for boys, girls, men’s, ladies & disabilities, being able to utilise the new facility will only enhance the playing experience for all concerned. It will also allow wider the community the opportunity to have this experience as well, along with creating new sessions and new ways to participate that will improve both physical and mental well-being.”

Find out more about Medway’s football facilities.

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