Over £1m to be invested into improving Wealden’s sports facilities


In the last twelve months almost £1.5 million has been committed by Wealden District Council to improve outdoor sports provision and secure community use at educational facilities.

At a recent Wealden District Full Council meeting, councillors agreed to provide £600,000 via an annual grant funding programme to improve playing pitches and outdoor sports facilities throughout the district. This equates to £200,000 per year, over a three-year period.

The first round of the annual grant funding programme will be opened later this year and be available to local sports partners and organisations.

It will provide much needed financial support to deliver the priority projects listed within the Wealden Playing Pitch and Outdoor Sports Strategy & Action Plan, agreed by sport’s governing bodies and Sport England, and adopted by the Council in December 2023.

Sports that could benefit from the funding programme include football, rugby union, tennis, cricket, lawn bowls, hockey, netball and stoolball.

This is in addition to a contribution of £216,406 towards the resurfacing and improvements to the lighting of the hockey pitch at Hailsham Community College and

Investment of£311,000 to improve the hockey pitch at Beacon Academy, Crowborough. A further £300,000 has been allocated towards supporting the installation of a new 3G football pitch, at the Academy should this project be progressed at the site.

Funding is being made available from Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) monies and will help improve the quality, accessibility, and protection of community-use sports facilities for years to come.

Councillor Kelvin Williams, Alliance for Wealden (Liberal Democrat), and lead councillor for Public Health, Wellbeing and Asset Management, said, “The health and wellbeing of our residents is pivotal to them living happier, more fulfilled, and heathier lives.

“The provision of high quality, local sports provision and open spaces enables residents to access opportunities to adopt healthier lifestyles through physical activity, and actively being involved in their community.

“By working with and supporting local partners and communities we are able to strengthen local relationships and build healthy, resilient communities. This funding will help to improve accessibility and the quality of many local sports facilities located throughout the district.”

Notes for editors

For details on the Wealden Playing Pitch and Outdoor Sports Strategy and Action Plan go to: www.wealden.gov.uk/planning-and-building-control/planning-policy/planning-policy-evidence-base/open-space/