Premier League stars open new community football club
Two Premier League brothers opened a Bromsgrove District
community football club’s new £380,000 facilities last weekend
- five years after the club faced closure.
Midlands-based Premier League midfielders Gary and Craig Gardner
opened Meadow Park Football Club’s new changing rooms and car park
at the Harris Brush factory football pitches in Stoke Prior on
Saturday June 30. The facilities were built following a major
fundraising campaign, including a £50,000 contribution from
Bromsgrove District Council, after Meadow Park was faced with
closure in 2007.
At the time, safety incidents forced hosts Harris to insist that
without separating the football club from the factory’s working
areas, including a separate car park, entrance, and changing
facilities, they would no longer be able to allow the club to use
the pitches. The club needed to raise £250,000 to be able to make
the required upgrades.
After securing £200,000 of that amount from various funding
bodies, in 2009 Bromsgrove District Council made a one-off
partnership contribution of £50,000 after a report to the
authority’s cabinet laid out the consequences to the community and
local sports provision if the club was lost.
Bromsgrove District Council’s portfolio holder for
community services Cllr Michael Webb said: “The council
were presented with solid evidence of the value of this club to the
community as well as the support it provided towards our goals in
terms of sports provision across the district.
“It was clear that the loss of this club would be a real blow
not only to the 300+ members across various age groups, but also to
the wider community. Meadow Park is well known to be an excellent
club, especially for young people, and yet through some truly
unfortunate circumstances it found itself between a rock and a hard
“It’s a real pleasure to now see the facilities up and running,
and we hope that they are able to keep this first rate community
football club going for another sixty years. Meadow Park chairman
Paul Hutchins deserves immense credit for his perseverance.”