Investigation work is being carried out at Exmouth’s Warren View Sports Ground by East Devon’s contractor Geotechnics Limited over the next few weeks to give reassurance that the site is suitable for all-weather pitches and other multi-sport facilities.
East Devon District Council is working with the Devon-based charity Exeter CITY Community Trust to develop a pioneering sports hub at the Ground, which is one of a number of sports and recreation sites owned and protected by the council in Exmouth and across the district.
The Community Trust and the council are working on proposals for a multi-use 3G synthetic surface pitch and other multi-sport facilities at the Ground and will be seeking potential funding opportunities, which include the Football Foundation.
The Community Trust, who will be leasing the Ground from the council if the funding is obtained and the scheme goes ahead, has asked the council to provide extra reassurance about the suitability of the site and the council’s Cabinet agreed last November to set aside an extra £20,000 to allow geotechnical and environmental tests to be carried out.
Most of the tests are being carried out outside of the football pitches currently used by youth teams from Exmouth United Football Club and the council and its contractors will continue to accommodate EUFC fixtures at the site during the works.
The site is a former clay pit and brickworks which was then backfilled before becoming sports pitches in the early 1980s. The work, which will involve drilling boreholes, installing monitoring points, digging trial pits, recording findings and taking samples, will provide additional information to help the Trust design the sports hub. The samples will be analysed, and the results used by East Devon’s specialist consultants Pell Frischmann to produce a comprehensive geoenvironmental and geotechnical risk assessment for the proposed new facilities.
Cllr Philip Skinner, East Devon District Council’s deputy Leader and Chairman of Exmouth’s Regeneration Board, said: “This work will reassure the Community Trust and the council that the next steps can be taken towards delivering these exciting proposals which include delivering a 3G pitch for the biggest town in Devon.
“There are some talented young sports people in Exmouth and we know that town football teams and sporting organisations are really keen to see modern facilities for all to use.
“Keeping fit and active is important for everyone and the Warren View facility will play a key role in improving the quality of many people’s lives.”
Julian Tagg, Chairman of Exeter CITY Community Trust, said: “In parallel to these works, the Community Trust continues to do everything possible to achieve and obtain all the pre-requisites necessary for the submission of a planning application which will then enable an application for grant funding.
“The Community Trust, in conjunction with East Devon District Council, remains resolute in its intention to open up funding opportunities that will make Warren View a much improved site for football and many other sports, accommodating all ages and abilities in the Exmouth community.”
Exeter CITY Community Trust is one of Exeter’s leading health and wellbeing charities and works in partnership with Exeter City Football Club providing a range of activities to people of all ages, focused on health, education, wellbeing and physical activity.