Football club plans to extend its facilities

The proposed development by Clifton Rangers in Bailiff Bridge. The canopy has now been moved further up the field after consultation with the residents
The proposed development by Clifton Rangers in Bailiff Bridge. The canopy has now been moved further up the field after consultation with the residents

CLIFTON Rangers have revealed their £1 million plans for a new clubhouse and outside training facility in Bailiff Bridge.

According to the plans, which have not been submitted to Calderdale Council yet, there will be a kitchen, a lift for the disabled, toilets, three changing rooms and storage. On the top floor there will be a function room with kitchen.

Chairman of the club, Chris Smith said the building will not be as big as the community centre in the village.

It will be glass fronted at the top so parents can watch their children playing. The land slopes downwards so Mr Smith said that it won’t be as visible from Bradford Road.

They plan to open up the entrance way and include additional parking to stop cars parking on the main road. They will be putting mesh down on the side of the pitch so the grass can grow but cars can park there during matches. The training facility will be moved closer to Wyke crossroads where the trees are higher and there are less houses. The club had originally wanted to put it within the trees but didn’t want to disturb the wildlife.

The facility will have a canopy (the size of a house) over it so it covers the younger children from the rain but doesn’t protect them from the cold. Mr Smith said another reason for covering it is to restrict the amount of light getting out from the flood lights. If they removed the canopy it would look like the ground at Mirfield Grammar School which they are hiring during the winter this year.

The area will be available to residents and they will be talking to Bailiff Bridge Primary School. Dog walkers can still use the area.

It will be funded via grants, selling off assets and fund-raising. The club will keep its site at Clifton and Lane Head because they need different size pitches.

Mr Smith said they did look for an alternative site with the council. “We just want to get children playing sport. But we are struggling to accommodate them.”

The club has 30 volunteer coaches coaching nearly 350 players. There is the soccer tots from three to five years (to be based at Bailiff Bridge), kick start from five to six years, and mini soccer from seven to ten. There will be a development centre with different coaches and development teams so players can be pushed to improve by competing against tougher opponents. There is junior football from 11 to 18 year olds. New coaches are picked from these players when they reach 16.

He hopes to have a girls team set up in the next four months ready to play in the league next year and improve the qualifications of his coaches to above the recommendation.

They have already spent £7,000 improving the site at Bailiff Bridge and have developed a relationship with Huddersfield Town.