FC Elmstead open new changing pavilion at Chislehurst Recreation Ground
PUBLISHED: 07:00 30 October 2018
FC Elmstead officially opened a new clubhouse at Chislehurst Recreation Ground in Bromley on Saturday, October 27.
The new building was made possible thanks to investment of £258,865 from the Premier League and The FA Facilities Fund, which is delivered by the Football Foundation.
Further significant funding and community involvement came from The Friends of Chislehurst Recreation Grounds (FOCRG), The Chislehurst Playing fields Association (CPFA), The Chislehurst Society and the London Marathon Charity Trust.
The grant enabled FC Elmstead, who play in the Southern Counties East Football League at Step Six, to build a changing pavilion.
This includes two team changing rooms and an officials’ changing room, all with en-suite shower facilities, clubroom and café, public toilets with disabled access, an office and a storage area.
Additionally, the club were able to carry out upgrade works to their grass pitches by improving the levelling and undertaking drainage works.
The club were founded in 1958 by David Brown who remains in an active role as Life President.
FC Elmstead now have more than 300 members and operate 21 teams, with 18 junior teams ranging from Under-7 through to Under-17 and three adult teams.
The new facilities will benefit all the players at the club as well as local church team, Christchurch Chislehurst and community keep fit club, Bootcamp.
It is predicted that the upgraded changing pavilion will result in an increase of more than 250 players at the club, which represents a growth of 86pc.
This will be supported by the formation of 15 new teams across all age groups.
Significant growth in the number of female players using the site is also expected.
Seven new women and girls’ teams will help to introduce at least 100 new female players to the club, with particular focus on junior teams below the age of 14.
Fabio Rossi, general manager of FC Elmstead, said: “I would like to officially thank the Mayor of Bromley Kim Botting for officially opening the new facilities.
“There are many partner funders who I would like to thank, especially the Premier League and The FA Facilities Fund, FOCRG, The Chislehurst Playing fields Association, The Chislehurst Society and the London Marathon Charity Trust.
“Also, a massive thanks to everybody that contributed in any way at all, big or small.”
Barbara Arora, chairwoman of FOCRG and of the CPFA, warmly praised the new pavilion: “This building, complete with small café, provides a fantastic new community asset for Chislehurst.
“The Friends have been delighted to have been actively involved with FC Elmstead since its inception and the CPFA has now achieved the aims of its founders back in the 1960s to invest in a playing field and changing rooms for the people of Chislehurst.
“We look forward to welcoming more people to our wonderful rec.”
Councillor Kira Gabbert, Bromley Council’s executive assistant for environment and community services said: “We have been pleased to support FC Elmstead as they have gone from strength to strength, with these new facilities supporting further development of the club.
“Our parks and open spaces are used for lots of different purposes and Chislehurst Recreation Ground is no exception and it is good to see FC Elmstead working with the Friends of Chislehurst Recreation Ground (FOCRG) in support of the wider Recreation Ground.
“I am deeply aware that none of this just ‘happens’ and I applaud the sheer hard work and dedication of all involved.”