Back of the net! A new partnership between a Premier League football club and a Fylde army barracks has been hailed at the opening of a £170,000 play park.
Military veterans from Everton in the Community’s Inside Right programme travelled to Weeton Barracks to play football against soldiers from the 2nd Battalion The Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment, before the new community park was opened by former Everton midfielder Ian Snodin and Weeton soldier Lt Col Hamish Cormack.
The duo helped to cut the ribbon to open the outdoor area following funding contributions from the regiment, residents at the barracks and a community grant scheme.
Lt Col Cormack said: “Everton in the Community is delivering a fantastic programme of community engagement with Inside Right and helping service men re-adjust to the transition from service into the civilian world which is everything that we support
“Here in the 2nd Battalion, football is a big part of our spirit and we use it as a means to exercise, but more important, as a means to bond and develop team spirit and support that we value as the military.
“That’s exactly what we’ve found that Everton are doing with Inside Right; they use football as a means to help so it’s the sort of thing that we want to support and we will continue to build the links with Everton in the Community moving forwards.”
Plans for a new park were put forward last year after a group of campaigning wives and mums appealed for funding to help build a community area.
After the cash was raised, the new play park was built on land previously deemed derelict and dangerous and has extended the current community centre on site, with equipment aimed at toddlers, children and teenagers.