Sports hub in Perry Barr set for £500k boost

Published: Tuesday, 25th January 2022

Plans for a £500,000 upgrade to a community sports facility in Perry Barr, to further strengthen the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games Legacy have been confirmed.

A new Multi-Use Games Area (MUGA) will be developed at Holford Drive Community Sports Hub (HDCSH) in the months following the Games through the project – jointly funded by Sport England and the Birmingham City Council capital contribution towards Birmingham 2022.

The MUGA will be located at the front of the premises on what is currently an unused piece of grassland.

The proposed addition of floodlights will enable year-round use and dramatically increase the useable times sporting activities can be provided for people in the area.

Currently HDCSH attracts around 800 people per week from Perry Barr and the surrounding areas to participate in a whole range of sporting activities.

These attendances however fall to around 300 during the winter months due to a lack of facilities that can be utilised during the darker nights. It is estimated the wider use that will be possible due to the floodlights will at least double the current winter numbers.

A total of £366,685 of National Lottery funding is being contributed by Sport England with the Birmingham City Council element of the Birmingham 2022 capital budget supplying the remaining £150,000.

Sport England Chief Executive, Tim Hollingsworth, said: “Local people are at the heart of our thinking when it comes to what the legacy of Birmingham 2022 will look like, and how it should provide opportunities for communities to get active.

“As an important space within Perry Barr, investment to enhance Holford Drive and create a facility that can be used all year round is fantastic news, and a great example of how the impact of the Games can continue beyond 2022.”

Cllr Ian Ward, Leader of Birmingham City Council, said: “As I've said all along, the legacy of Birmingham 2022 is massively important to us – the Games are more than 11 days of sport and we need to look at how we build on the years of good work provided for the community by brilliant organisations like Holford Drive Community Sports Hub.

"The ongoing transformation of Perry Barr includes up to 2,000 new homes and we need to ensure improved infrastructure and facilities, such as those provided at the Hub, are available to the increased number of people that will call Perry Barr home.

“This project will help us achieve that, ensuring that many more people can lead active and healthy lives.”

John Crabtree, Chair of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games, said: “An important part of the Games Partner legacy plan is an ambition to increase physical activity and wellbeing and the investment that is being made at the Holford Drive Community Sports Hub is a great example of the work that’s being done to achieve this aim.

“This is another example of how Birmingham 2022 and its partners are trying to ensure that the Commonwealth Games leaves lasting benefits for the people of the host city.”

Minister for Sport and Tourism, Nigel Huddleston, said: “This is a fantastic example of the important legacy Birmingham 2022 is creating for local people. This public funding will make a real difference to the Perry Barr community - giving people better sports facilities on their doorstep and encouraging them to get active.”

Birmingham 2022 is currently continuing discussions with the Holford Drive team on how the Perry Barr facility might be utilised during the Commonwealth Games which start on 28 July and finish on 8 August.

Work on upgrading the facility will begin later in the year.

Background notes

HDCSH was established as a company limited by Guarantee, and registered with the Charity Commission on 24 September 2013. It was established for the benefit of citizen’s residing in Perry Barr and the surrounding area. HDCSH has been delivering a range of community, health and recreation activities and aiding the development of young people, through sport and recreation activities and services to develop their skills, capacities and capabilities to enable them to participate maturely and responsibly within society.

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