Mayor kicks off new era for girls football
Former Saints and England player Mick Channon and the Mayor of Winchester, Cllr Frank Pearson formally opened new playing field facilities at King George V Playing Fields in Bar End on Sunday following significant investment by Winchester City Council.
New goal posts and pitch markings have transformed the playing fields. The facilities now include improved access for organisers and 11 football pitches – which have adult full-size markings overlaid with pitch marking for youth football.The new facilities were put to the test on Sunday 9 September when almost 1,000 players including Mick’s grand-daughter Evie competed in Winchester City Flyers annual girls football tournament.
The opening of the new facility coincides with the formation of a new Girls League - Hampshire Girls Youth Football League (HGYFL). Winchester & District Girls Football League has permanently moved to King George V Playing Fields securing the future of girls football in the district.
Cllr Lisa Griffiths, Portfolio holder for Health & Wellbeing said :
“It’s great to see so many girls out playing football and having fun. Delivering these pitches on time for the new season and within budget has been a lot of hard work but events like this make it all worthwhile.
“This investment means more football can be played during the football season, including during the wet months when previously matches have had to be postponed due to waterlogging and bad weather.”
Winchester City Flyers Club Chairman Allan Higgs said:
"We are extremely grateful to the council for their hard work and efforts in securing us this venue which is a superb setting from which to continue to grow female football.
“The council’s shared passion for the female game is beyond dispute and we are pleased to have such great supporters of the work we do on our side. We look forward to many long and happy years at King George's as an established base to allow us to continue to promote and grow the female game.”