• DerbyshireFootball

Exciting times continue at Ilkeston Town with 4G pitch to be laid

Ilkeston Town have confirmed that the next phase of plans in the club’s development is poised to go ahead.

Owner Mark Clifford and investors Andrew Nally and David Hilton have overseen widespread changes at the New Manor Ground since taking over in 2019.

Now, Clifford has confirmed the planned 4G pitch, initially scheduled to be laid last summer but delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, is to be installed this month.

It is then expected further extensive ground improvements will take place subject to planning permission being granted.

In a statement, Clifford said: “In October 2019, certain promises were made to the supporters by the new regime at the club.

“Stage one was to completely eradicate the significant debts the club had accumulated and create an infrastructure with heavy community involvement.

“The second phase was to completely refurbish the stadium and create an atmosphere to be proud of that would also help attract a younger generation to the NMG.

“Both phases were completed despite working through an unprecedented pandemic, with no revenue being generated by the club or the investors' own businesses.

“Phase three is the 4G FIFA Pro playing surface. [This] will allow the club to compete at a much higher level whilst maintaining a sustainable budget, protecting the club's future forever.

“The facility will also create a fantastic all weather playing surface for all our junior, academy and ladies teams, along with providing a key venue for our local community in becoming a full-time operation, open seven days a week.

“We are now excited to announce that the commencement date of phase three is confirmed as May 24 and the installation will be completed in time for the new 2021/22 season.

“Phase four, which is planned for the spring of 2022 or sooner, is currently at the planning stage with Erewash Borough Council and no delays are expected with this.

“This phase is for a new stand with LED scoreboard, a new two-storey club shop, offices and a boardroom, along with 15 industrial units and further alterations and improvements to the bar and function rooms.”

*This story originally appeared at www.ilkestonadvertiser.co.uk