Silloth Rugby Football Club wanted to extend their existing clubhouse lounge and function area that they share with Silloth Football Club. Due to the lack of space within the clubhouse it has become very cramped and uncomfortable, and the lack of space was also impacting on the community use and private functions they could offer, resulting in a significant drop in revenue.
By extending our clubhouse they felt they would be able to provide a facility the whole community can use, offering opportunities for more people to get involved/play sport whilst ensuring the survival of the club.
Why was it needed?
This extension was needed at the Club to ensure that both Rugby and Football could continue to be played there, and for the club to continue to exist and develop.
The area at the side of the existing clubhouse where they intended to extend the clubhouse was a pebble-dashed cladded area that was uncovered and exposed. This made the facility both unattractive and uninviting, and is only ever used by players, spectators and the public on sunny, warm days (see photos below).
Temporary fixes had been implemented such as covering part of this with a corrugated iron roof, however this offered little/no shelter from the wind or rain and therefore not sustainable as the club tried to develop and grow.
Through consultation with visiting clubs, many had expressed the need for more space, and the majority had admitted that they generally didn’t stay after games to socialise and have a drink/eat due to the lack of space to do so.
What difference did it make?
The club is the only sports facility in the immediate area and therefore the extension was essential to keep it running in order to provide an opportunity for the local community to get involved with either playing sport or volunteering at the club.
By having these improvements, it has helped grow both rugby and football players at the respective rugby and football clubs. For example, having warm/comfortable facilities with adequate space have been paramount when attracting players to the club.
Although rugby and football are the main sports played on the site, there is also netball, tennis, bowling and golf which operate from the clubhouse as part of the sports association. Furthermore, the facilities are used by a variety of other social groups. As such the extension has enabled the club to attract all ages to the facility, becoming more of a focal point for groups and casual/social users. For example, it has allowed the club to offer more local events and tournaments to be hosted at the club throughout both the playing, and non-playing season supported by the clubs volunteers.
Jimmy Lettice, committee member at the club said ‘this has made a real difference to both the rugby and football club, enabling us to attract more players, volunteers and community users, with the biggest difference seen in the winter months. If it wasn’t for the help of Funding 4 Sport, we don’t’ believe we would have been able to achieve this – their expertise, knowledge and commitment to the project was second-to-none, and therefore since working with them on this capital project, we have worked with them on several smaller revenue projects, bringing us much needed revenue into the club to deliver other community projects.’
How did they make it happen?
After speaking to us, following an unsuccessful bid to Sport England’s Inspired Facilities, the club asked Funding 4 Sport to re-write another application to the fund. Re-writing the application we got the club £61k to fund this work. See before, during and after photos below:
Following this application, Funding 4 Sport has worked with Silloth Rugby Football Club to achieve both Lottery and Sport England funding towards smaller revenue projects up to £10k to enable them to grow rugby at the club and have a kitchen installed.
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