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Shinfield Cricket & Football Pitches Receive £7 Million Boost

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Work on a new £7 million sports facility in Shinfield will begin this month as part of plans between Shinfield Parish Council, Wokingham Borough Council and the University of Reading to bring new outdoor and recreation facilities to Shinfield.

The new site will provide local football and cricket teams with much-needed new facilities, including two football pitches and a full-size cricket pitch. A new pavilion will also be built, complete with changing rooms, a large function room and a kitchen/bar.

The pavilion is expected to be complete later this year and will include social space for use and hire for the local community. The pitches are expected to be ready for the first sporting encounters by summer 2025.

The sports facility has come forward as part of the Shinfield West housing development. Work is being carried out by Beard Construction on behalf of the University of Reading. Once all works are completed, the facilities will be managed, maintained and operated by Shinfield Parish Council.

This follows on from the cricket pitch and pavilion which opened at the Manor Ground in May 2023.

Both sports facilities form part of a wider vision for the long-term future of sport and recreation in Shinfield. The University and Shinfield Parish Council jointly held a public consultation in January 2023 to discuss plans and ideas for further sports pitches, a community growing garden and further green space, including active travel routes between different locations.

Professor Robert Van de Noort, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Reading, said: “We all know about the benefits an active lifestyle can have on our physical and mental health, and the University of Reading is happy to deliver this fantastic new facility for the residents and sports teams of Shinfield.

“The University is committed to continue working with the Shinfield community to develop outdoor facilities that will be a real benefit to the local community. As a keen cyclist, I am especially looking forward to seeing more cycle routes to help people travel in a fun, healthy and sustainable way, and I know that many people in the area will appreciate these new cricket, football and social facilities too.” Cllr Ian Clarke, speaking for Shinfield Parish Council, welcomed the news: “This development helps address the shortfall in sporting facilities within the parish where participation, especially from girls and women players, has grown dramatically.”