Five new pitches were co-funded by the Premier League through the FA Facilities Fund, and were match funded by Wythenshawe Community Housing Group, which is a co-sponsor of the school.
The previous pitches were over 10 years old and in need of refurbishment. The £230,000 funding allowed the sub-structure of the pitches to be repaired alongside laying brand new 3G surfaces. The facility now boasts one seven-a-side pitch and four five-a-side pitches, which are also available to the local community in the evenings.
During the visit, Sir Alex met with students and teachers before cutting the ribbon to officially open the pitches. He commented, “These pitches give kids not just an option to be active in sport but to practice and be good at the sport, so I think it’s a great opportunity.”
He continued, “It’s great the school having these facilities because I always think education is not always about the education itself, it’s about inspiring young kids and I think they’ll get great inspiration from these pitches”
Headteacher James Eldon believes the pitches have been a great investment, he said, “We are thrilled to be able to offer a first class facility to our students and the wider community. The pitches are outstanding and we are very excited to see Manchester Enterprise Academy, with help from Manchester United Foundation, develop into a major hub for football development and coaching in the North West.”
Manchester Enterprise Academy has been a partner school of the Foundation through its Hub of the Community programme since 2010. Foundation coach, Nick Bradshaw, who is predominantly based within the school, has seen the partnership flourish with Academy now listed in the top 100 most improved schools in England.
Nick said, “The Headteacher has structured the school in a way that works for the kids and it shows with them now being one of the top hundred schools in the country.”
He concluded, “The work that we do as Manchester United Foundation not only helps the school and its feeder primaries but also the area itself.”