A proposal to construct a new 3G floodlit pitch in Worthing has taken a step forward.
A new pitch and car park have been proposed at Palatine Park, the home of Worthing Town Football Club.
Councillors on Adur and Worthing council’s joint strategic committee gave permission for the council to submit a planning application for the new pitch at a meeting on Tuesday.
A full investigation into the impact of floodlighting and increased use will be carried out before any planning permission is sought.
A spokesman for the council said the move would mean Worthing Town Football Club, which has 41 teams playing at Palatine Park, would have an all-year round main playing pitch and training surface and would no longer have to find suitable pitches outside the borough.
Despite its size, the club currently lacks winter training facilities and its grass pitches, which number up to 18, are prone to flooding.
Community sports teams would also benefit from the new pitch, the spokesman said.
The proposal is reliant on a successful £500,000 bid to the Football Foundation plus a contribution of £340,000 from Worthing Borough Council, taken from community funds provided by developers as part of the planning process to build more than 700 homes at West Durrington.
Discussing the proposal at the meeting at The Shoreham Centre on Tuesday, councillor Val Turner said: “I think this is a great idea, I know there’s an awful lot of children playing in that ground at the moment.
“A 3G pitch would be brilliant for them.”
Councillor Kevin Jenkins said: “It’s fair to say there is a large sum of 106 receipts money for the West Durrington development that is sitting out there to be utilised for a facility such as this and it’s only right and proper that we try to put this facility back in the communities that have experienced the disruption while development is going on.”
The plans include the installation of a keypad system for remote bookings to maximise use and help ensure that the pitch remains a publicly-owned facility, the council spokesman said.
If planning permission is given, the 3G pitch will be built on land directly to the north of the existing Clubhouse, 40 metres away from residential properties.