A strategy which will maximise the provision of playing pitch facilities in County Durham is to be discussed next week.
Durham County Council’s Cabinet will be asked to adopt a countywide Playing Pitch Strategy (PPS) to ensure playing pitch facilities meet the needs of existing and future residents.
Supporting the County Durham Plan, it will ensure current football, rugby, hockey and cricket pitches are maintained and improved up to 2035, providing opportunities for communities across the county to access sports.
The strategy will provide a vision for the future of playing pitches in order to have a positive impact on communities by encouraging more people to make active choices while supporting the development of club and community sport.
It also meets the requirements of the National Planning Policy Framework and will help to improve the health, social and cultural wellbeing of residents and provide long-term benefits to communities through sufficient community facilities.
As well as helping the council to make planning decisions, it also complements its Leisure Transformation Programme. Supporting the wider leisure and sport offer, it will contribute to improving the physical and mental health of residents, helping everyone to live long and independent lives.
Councillors will be asked to adopt the strategy and support some investment into pitch improvements and enhanced maintenance.
Durham County Council owned pitches will be a primary focus for improvement to ensure that council pitches are playable for the whole season and benefit those who use the facilities across the county.
Cllr James Rowlandson, Durham County Council’s cabinet member for resources, investment and assets, said: “Adopting the Playing Pitch Strategy is a significant step towards meeting sporting needs across County Durham. It will help us to take a planned approach to the provision of playing field facilities and make sure opportunities for sport are considered in the planning process.
“The strategy will ensure that we can more effectively meet the demand for playing pitches, now and in the future.
“It will also allow us to work closely with communities to develop the local sporting offer and deliver the best outcomes for communities across the county.
“This will enable more residents to participate in physical activity and support them in living long and independent lives.”
Cabinet will meet at 9.30am on Wednesday, November 17.