Shoreham FC was one of four non-league clubs to win last year’s Buildbase £100K Transfer Deal, which saw them walk away with a £25,000 product bursary having successfully pitched their project against four other finalists.
The £25,000 worth of building, electrical, plumbing and hire materials has been put to good use as the club hopes to attract more fans and players with the renovated facilities at Middle Road ground.
The West Stand has been completely refurbished with a new timber structure and covered seating for up to 70 people.
The main changing block has been transformed inside and out with a new roof and dressing room. Old fluorescent tube lighting has been replaced with LED and the facility has been decorated throughout.
The old porter cabin has taken on a new life as a girl’s changing room. Painted in the Shoreham FC royal blue, it has undergone major work with a re-roof as well as new home and away dressing rooms equipped with seating, hangers and toilets.
Club volunteers worked in shifts to meet Covid restrictions, completing all of the work in 12 weeks with support from the local Buildbase branch in Crawley.
Co-chairman Stuart Slaney, who also works as a project manager, helped undertake the renovation work with his son Luca Slaney, Vice President Kith Hewitt and other club volunteers. He said:
“We’re run by volunteers and generate income through donations, sponsorship and subscriptions and were finding it really really difficult to do everything that needed doing.
“Some of our facilities were completely dilapidated. We had a plan, but it was going to take five years and then we applied for the Buildbase bursary. Winning meant that we could fast track the renovation while investing income into the club such as for new equipment, kit and footballs.
“The Buildbase bursary means more people will be able to sit and watch the game out of the rain and cold. Nice changing facilities will attract more players, particularly under 18s, and the changing rooms for girls mean we can produce more girls’ teams.
“The work gives us breathing space for the next five to ten years when we hope to focus on growing the club in the local community, particularly among families and children.”
Andy Tompkins, Buildbase Regional Managing Director for the South said: “It’s fantastic to see Shoreham FC turn around its prospects so quickly. This is exactly what this bursary is for. Helping out non-league clubs that are in desperate need of support to strengthen their position. Better facilities mean they’ll be able to attract more young people and girls in to football while improving their contribution to the local community.”
Buildbase has been giving away building materials to help renovate non-league football clubs since it became the title sponsor of the FA Trophy and Vase in 2016.