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Luke Molyneux opens new stand at Shildon AFC

Luke Molyneux opens new stand at Shildon AFC

Luke Molyneux opens new stand at Shildon AFC

Sunderland striker Luke Molyneux opened a new all-seater covered stand at Shildon AFC recently (Friday 21 September). This has been made possible by investment from the Premier League, which has been delivered by the Football Stadia Improvement Fund (FSIF).

The investment has enabled Shildon AFC, who play at Step 5 in the EBAC Northern League, Division One, to install the new 200 capacity stand that is fully compliant with current safety legislation. The improvements mean that the club’s stadium, Dean Street, now meets the requirements of Grade F of the FA National Ground Grading Criteria for their Step 5 position.

As official partner of Shildon AFC, the Sunderland AFC Foundation of Light Academy also play at the site and will benefit from the improvements. In addition to this, the stand will enhance spectator experience for followers of Shildon AFC’s development centre in which teams from the age of six attend to play in football tournaments.

Formed in 1890, Shildon AFC was recently was home to Lewis Wing of Middlesbrough, who left The Railwaymen at the end of the 2016-17 season to sign for Middlesbrough. Other notable ex-Shildon AFC players include Kevin Stonehouse, who went on to play for Blackburn and Huddersfield Town in the 1970’s.

The project was made possible by a £57,027 grant from the Premier League, which is delivered through the Football Stadia Improvement Fund – the sister organisation of the Football Foundation.

In 2016 Shildon AFC were awarded a £3,100 grant from the Football Stadia Improvement Fund to install replacement boundary fencing. This grant ensured that the club met the required safety standards at the ground.

David Dent, Chairman of Shildon AFC, said: “The fantastic support from the Football Stadia Improvement Fund and the Premier League has given the Club a very real opportunity to be the best we can be and the chance to progress to Step 4 and hopefully beyond. The stand is a massive piece of the jigsaw in terms of ground improvements required for the next level of the National League and it undoubtedly improves spectator experience.

“A big thank you also to Vest Construction, Stadia Solutions and Alex Law from our project managers, Identity Consult, who all played their part in delivering the scheme within budget. Finally, a big thank you to Luke Molyneux, an exciting young talent, from Sunderland AFC, who has officially opened our new stand. Luke spent a lot of his childhood in Shildon, literally a stone’s throw from the ground and it’s good to see that he hasn’t forgotten his Shildon roots.”

Peter McCormick OBE, Chairman of the Football Stadia Improvement Fund, said: “My congratulations go to Shildon AFC for their efforts throughout this project, which will hopefully help them to secure promotion to Step 4. The FSIF, thanks to investment from the Premier League, works hard to support clubs as they work to move up through the game and this is a great example of what that money can achieve.

“I hope that Shildon AFC are able to make the most of their ground improvements and that their fans enjoy the new, more comfortable spectator provision. I’m sure that this project will support the club in further growth, both through developing their players and encouraging more locals to come along for fixtures.”

ENDS 

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Quote

The stand is a massive piece of the jigsaw in terms of ground improvements required for the next level of the National League and it undoubtedly improves spectator experience.” - David Dent, Chairman of Shildon AFC

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