The first phase of upgrades to Marley Activities and Coaching Centre, Keighley, began this week as part of overall improvement works taking place at the facility.

Sports pitches at Marley will be upgraded with FIFA accredited artificial surfaces while the indoor surface at the centre will also be replaced with a carpeted surface.

Further upgrades to the centre will take place in later phases which include improved fencing to meet Football Association standards. This will allow Steeton AFC to use Marley as their home playing ground and will also mean fans can attend Steeton matches at the facility.

Work to the sports pitches at Marley began on Monday, August 17 and will take eight weeks to complete at a cost £280,000.

Funding for the project was secured by Bradford Council while the Football Facilities Improvement Fund will support the upgrades which will allow fan access to future Steeton AFC matches.

Councillor Sarah Ferriby, Bradford Council’s Executive Member for Healthy People and Places, said: “It is great that the planned works at the Marley site are about to start. Our local residents deserve to see improvements being made to our sports pitches in Bradford district and this facility will encourage those who want to participate in team sports such as football and rugby, for many years to come.

“A key priority for us is for people to keep fit and active. Providing better sports facilities for residents, schools and local sports clubs within their local area is one way we can ensure this.

“Steeton AFC playing home games at Marley will be a great new addition to the centre that I hope existing and new supporters will enjoy.

“The Marley facility is also used by grassroots football teams of all ages meaning it will also benefit the next generation of footballers from across the district.”

The upgrade to Marley Activities and Coaching Centre is part of Bradford Council’s 2019 Playing Pitch Strategy (PPS) and Sports Playing Pitch Improvement Programme (SPIP) which aims to address declining participation in football, cricket, rugby (both League and Football Union), tennis and athletics through improved grassroots facilities.