Pitch fees could spell end of Sunday league football

The manager of a Kettering football team has warned that increases in the cost of hiring football pitches could spell the end of Sunday league action in the town
The manager of a Kettering football team has warned that increases in the cost of hiring football pitches could spell the end of Sunday league action in the town
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The manager of a Kettering football team has warned that increases in the cost of hiring football pitches could spell the end of Sunday league action in the town.

Tom Vickers, manager of the K Town Ducks, who play in the Rushden and District Sunday League, said his players book a pitch at the Weekley Glebe Road pitches in Kettering every Sunday.

However, he has warned that Sunday league football could be no more after Kettering Council increased its hire cost from £46 to £55 for the new season – which he says is too much.

Mr Vickers said: “These Sundays are for fun and they are a get-together for groups of friends to play in a competitive league.

“We already pay £46 per match for the Weekley Glebe Road pitches, which are run by Kettering Council.

“They are now upping the cost to £55, which is not affordable because it is on top of £25 to £30 which we already pay for a referee.

“Something needs to be done because there is a danger that Sunday league football will be no more as it is getting too expensive.”

Other K Town Ducks players also got in touch with the Telegraph to say they were dissatisfied with the level of grass cutting on the Weekley Glebe Road pitches.

Although Kettering Council owns the Weekley Glebe Road facility, bookings and administration are carried out by the neighbouring Kettering Buccleuch Academy.

Corby Council charges £40 for one-off bookings of its football pitches.

Annual bookings for 36 fixtures costs £520, or 18 matches costs £260.

Wellingborough Council charged £41 for pitch rental last year.

A spokesman for Kettering Council said the authority had received a number of comments about the recent fee increase.

She added: “We have been looking at the hire charge fees for football pitches – in view of the comments we have received we are currently reviewing those proposed fee increases.”