Club invites your ideas on pitch plans

RESIDENTS will be able to help shape a potential development in their village.

Members of Clifton Rangers have already held one meeting with some residents in Bailiff Bridge over their plans to build a five-a-side covered football pitch and two-storey clubhouse with changing facilities on the recreational fields just off Bradford Road close to the primary school.

No plans have been submitted to Calderdale Council because the club wanted to consult with residents.

Chairman Chris Smith who arranged the meeting, said: “What I have tried to do is engage with the local community. I am not going to build something without talking to them.

“I want to get their input to make sure the plans are accommodating to the people of Bailiff Bridge. We held a meeting a few weeks ago and this was our first stab at what we as a football club ideally want. We have not been talking to planning because we wanted residents’ input.

“This was also a chance to ask me any questions that they might have about our plans and to say anything that is wrong or will be detrimental to them and let me feed that back to the architect.

“We wanted to answer peoples concerns. We do plan to have an open day and sit down so everybody can come and personally look at the plans at the community centre. It will give people the opportunity to talk to me on a one-to-one and I can feed as much as possible into the plans.

“We are never going to be able to please everybody. The one thing I did say to everybody who attended is to consider what there is for young people to do in the area?

“I live in Bailiff Bridge and have young children. There is getting to be a younger population in the area and there is nothing for them to do even at the community centre, there is not even a youth club.

“We will be offering the pitch to Bailiff Bridge Primary School as well which only has a small field for their PE lessons.”

He said the initial plan was for a two storey changing facility but after discussions with residents they were looking at reducing that to a single storey.

One issue they were trying to address was to increase the number of girls at the club.

“We have been trying for years to set up a girls team. It is not just a Clifton Rangers problem but a Football Association problem,” he said.

“But I have just found a 20-year-old woman who hopefully will be able to set up a girls football team.

“I have a daughter and she is playing with the boys at our club at the moment. We do have a few girls interested just not enough to form a team.”

Councillor David Kirton (Con, Hipp/Light) attended the meeting with colleague Councillor Graham Hall (Con, Hipp/Light).

“The club has just got a 25 lease playing football in that area and no sooner have they got that they are wanting to do this.

“There was 70-100 people at the meeting and the feeling about it was strongly against it. We are not in support of it. We don’t want to knock back sports facilities but they have got to be in the right place,” he said.

Resident Tracy Andrews was also against the proposal saying it was not the right place for it but she was in support of the club developing.

A date is yet to be fixed for the next consultation meeting.