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Become a Partner of the Parklife Football Hubs Programme!

Leagues and clubs in Newcastle who feel they would benefit from becoming a partner of the Parklife Football Hubs Programme, and be able to contribute to the football development outcomes on one of the Hub Sites, can now submit their expression of interest.


For those who were unable to attend our league and club consultation events, a full overview of the programme, and details on how you can get involved, can be viewed below.


Parklife is a partnership approach by The FA, Sport England, and The Premier League - investing in local, accessible, high-quality training and match play facilities. They are designed to be sustainable, generating income to be re-invested in facilities for grassroots football.

Aims of Parklife

• Financially sustainable
• Designed in partnership with stakeholders
• Encourage people to play more regularly and achieve wider social outcomes
• Be affordable
• Be flexible catering for football, other sports
• Offer a high quality user experience
• Provide a new management and operational approach to grassroots football facilities

What is a Parklife Portfolio and Hub?

The portfolio is the type and number of facilities across an area, which will typically be two or three Hub Sites each containing:

• A minimum of two Artificial Grass Pitches (AGPs)
• Changing accommodation
• Natural grass pitch provision
• In some cases links with health and fitness or other commercial provision
• Social and education space
• Café
• Potentially other sports facilities in addition to football

How are Parklife Hubs Managed?

A not for profit (charitable status) Football Trust for the City (Newcastle) is created. This Trust includes representatives from The FA, County Football Association, The Local Authority, Football Club Community Trust and independent(s).

Land is leased on a long-term basis to the Football Trust at peppercorn rent – the Football Trust procures a private operator to run each site and the operator is responsible for delivering agreed outcomes on behalf of the Football Trust. After covering the operator’s costs and sinking fund payments, profit is paid to the Football Trust which invests profits back into grassroots football locally.

Who are the Stakeholders?

• Newcastle City Council – the lead applicant to the funding programme
• Northumberland FA – provide project and club support, local knowledge and insight 
• Newcastle United Foundation – community programmes and links to player pathways
• The Football Foundation – manage the funding application process and capital investment on behalf of the Funding Partners
• Sport England - site selection, statutory planning role, ensuring wider outcomes are delivered
• The FA – provide strategic overview of the project

Where are the Hub Sites?

Two sites have been identified:

• Blakelaw Park
• Bullocksteads

What does this mean for Grassroots football in Newcastle?

• The project is a city-wide approach that will provide high-quality, affordable training and match play facilities that all clubs in the city can benefit from, with more mini, youth and 9v9 football being played on 3G surfaces.
• Increased access to 3G facilities and high-quality grass pitches to the adult game
• The sites will provide better quality and more availability of 3G pitches, which will help clubs to grow and become more diverse.
• The sites will help to reduce the number of fixtures cancelled due to poor pitch conditions, as well as protecting pitch hire costs.
• They will also provide social and coach education facilities

How can clubs and leagues become involved in the project?

• Clubs/leagues can help in the delivery of football outcomes with targets agreed linked to club development plans and league provision
• This can include targets around growing the number of different teams
• Targets monitored through club development plans and fixture information
• Clubs/leagues can help to influence what the usage plans and pricing look like for the facilities
• Act as an ambassador for the site(s) and work with the operator and the stakeholders represented on the Trust

What does a Partner Club/League look like?

Partner Clubs/leagues are those who can demonstrate how they can support the achievement of football outcomes

Partner Clubs/Leagues must be:

• Charter Standard (Club, Development, Community, Adult, League)
• Able to demonstrate plans to grow participation and diversify by introducing teams such as women & girls, disability
• Able to demonstrate financial stability
• In addition, partner clubs/leagues should be local to a Parklife site and show a need for additional or improved match and/or training facilities

Expressions of Interest

Any club or league who wishes to be considered to become a partner in the project should consider the following information:

• Consider what the benefit would be to you as a club/league
• Consider how as a club/league you can contribute to football and social outcomes

To register interest or for further information please download the document below or email


Please complete the EOI (one per organisation) and return to Mark via email by Friday 6 July 2018.

To accompany your, EOI provide copies of your development plan, management structure, and financial records.

Please provide current club structure and information (number of teams, formats, venues, and pitch requirements) and a copy of your most recent full club/league accounts

EOIs will be assessed by the panel, with shortlisted clubs contacted to book a panel meeting.

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