Budding sports stars are to be given a boost as a new artificial pitch has been announced for a city leisure centre.
A new 3G pitch is set to be installed at West View Climbing and Leisure Centre, in Ribbleton, Preston, at a cost of £55,000.
Council chiefs say that, without replacing the current pitch, the centre would face a loss of income of £1.2m.
Leaders have described the announcement, alongside plans for a new car park for the centre, as “great news”.
A decision on the new pitch is due to be made by Preston Council’s cabinet, which will also discuss an offer by James Hall and Co to gift the authority two parcels of land near to West View.
Coun Veronica Afrin, cabinet member for culture and leisure services, said: “The pitch is in use practically all daylight hours by so many different groups.
“It’s an absolutely vital part of the West View offer, so obviously I’m all for it.
“And we are just on the brink of getting the new car park, so that will improve things greatly because at the moment the football pitch is surrounded by bits of car park.
“It’s great news. Both of the leisure centres are very well used and we want to make sure they are good for everybody.
“That pitch is phenomenal because you never go past there without somebody using it, so I’m sure it will be worth it.”
A report to cabinet said the current artificial pitch was “in need of significant repair due to use”, and said a financial assessment had shown that a complete replacement of the pitch was the best option for the council.
It said: “The all-weather 3G outdoor pitch at West View Climbing and Leisure Centre was originally purchased in 2005.
“This pitch has now reached the end of its life and is in need of replacement.
“At present the central strip of the pitch requires immediate replacement whilst the outside of the pitch will need replacing within three years’ time.
“Any new pitch will have a life span of 12 years.
“Without this replacement there would be a loss of income of £1.2m.
“The total cost of the scheme is £55,000 and this figure includes the purchase and installation of the 3G pitch.”