The facilities at Hungerford Town’s Bulpit Lane, have been transformed to now match the heights of their National League South status.
The ground improvements were unveiled last Saturday, and made possible by investment from the Premier League, which has been delivered by the Football Stadia Improvement Fund (FSIF).
Having steadily risen through the leagues in recent years, from Step 5 in 2008/09 to their current Step 2 position, the club needed to overhaul the matchday facilities at their ground to keep pace with its league status.
The investment has allowed Hungerford to carry out an array of renovation works across four different elements. The clubhouse has been extended and improved to provide a reconfigured spectator entrance, spectator toilet block and an additional officials’ changing room.
Replacement turnstiles have been fitted, along with a new first aid room and the extension of the club’s main covered stand to add an additional 100 seats to provide the necessary 250 capacity for Step 2 football. Finally, the existing floodlights were upgraded to elevate the lighting level at the ground – all of which will ensure that the club now meets Grade B of the FA National Ground Grading Criteria applicable to Step 2.
With a longstanding history dating back to 1886, Hungerford reached the Conference South in 2016 – the highest ever level the club has played at. Former players include Southampton striker Charlie Austin, who played for the Crusaders aged 17 and retired Reading captain Steve Hetzke.
The project was made possible by a £70,928 grant from the Premier League, which is delivered through the Football Stadia Improvement Fund – the sister organisation of the Football Foundation.
Peter McCormick OBE, Chairman of the Football Stadia Improvement Fund, said: “I’m delighted that investment from the Premier League has been able to support Hungerford Town FC following their fantastic rise from Step 5 football to Step 2 during the last 10 years. The improvements made at Bulpit Lane will no doubt help the club to continue developing in the future.
“The FSIF directs money from the Premier League into improving the standard of lower-league stadia. This is helping to develop the provision of football at lower levels of the game, and make facilities safer. Congratulations to the club for securing this funding.”
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