How Football Club Relocation Secured a Bright Future for Ringmer AFC

By relocating their football club, Ringmer AFC secured housing developer funding from Bedford Park Developments to finance a terrific new football facility complete with 3G Pitch and clubhouse. The new 3G pitch serves the club, a school, and generates significant pitch hire revenue to support high quality football in Ringmer for years to come.

Key Achievements

  • Full sized 3G Pitch for Football
  • Two-storey club house with bar, 4-team changing rooms, two officials changing rooms and a boardroom
  • 50-Seater stand, floodlighting and fencing
  • Access road, pathways and car park construction
  • Funding secured by releasing existing land for development
  • New facility serves Ringmer AFC, Ringmer Rovers Junior Football Club (RRJFC) and Kings Academy School
  • Generates revenue from external hire to the local community
  • Revenues are further boosted from hire to Chelsea FC and Brighton & Hove Albion FC who use the pitch to train their academy teams

The Challenge

Newly formed Ringmer AFC is the result of a merger between Ringmer Football Club (est. 1905) and AFC Ringmer (est. 2004). Formerly based at The Caburn ground, Ringmer FC were forced to withdraw from the Southern Counties Combination League due to escalating running costs, with AFC Ringmer taking up residency for the 18/19 season.

With a pitch that was not fit for purpose, and an outdated clubhouse, significant investment was required to support the continuation of football in the area. However, the cost of upgrading the facilities was prohibitive and the Ringmer FC Trustees and Committee looked to alternative solutions.

The Solution

Ringmer AFC recognised the value of the land at The Caburn ground and were able to secure their new facility by selling their former ground for residential property development.

As part of the deal, the property developer, Bedford Park Developments, funded the relocation and construction costs of a brand-new facility at the nearby Kings Academy School, with students from Kings and the nearby Primary School benefitting from the use of the pitch during school hours. With planning secured on the new football facility, housing development and rifle club relocation, Bedford Park Developments’ work to develop the former Ringmer ground commenced in September 2020, where 76 new homes will be constructed.

S&C Slatter were engaged to construct a state of the art 3G Pitch, providing the durability required for maximum play and performance, supporting the growth of Ringmer AFC and football within the wider community. A two-storey club house was constructed on site, complete with 4x team changing rooms, upstairs bar and boardroom, food and drink kiosk and facilities for both spectators and officials.

Experienced in sports club relocation the S&C Slatter team undertook all elements of the project, from building the 3G pitch with associated fencing and floodlighting to constructing a new access road and car park. We worked closely with the club to ensure the new football ground would maximise benefits for both club and community, cementing the new location as a hub for football within Ringmer and the Lewes District of East Sussex.

The club and S&C Slatter worked closely together throughout  the construction and handover phases and despite the delays caused by heavy rainfall and the coronavirus pandemic, the facility was handed over to the newly formed club in time for their 2020/21 season opener on the 5th September 2020.

 

The Result


The Ringmer FC Trustees and Committee worked hard for many years to pull the deal together and to successfully realise the value of their former ground to create a superb new football facility, which engages the local community and generates new revenues for the club.

Despite construction taking place during the uncertainty of COVID-19, Ringmer AFC have quickly established effective social distancing protocols and the new ground is a hub of activity, with the pitch in use daily since handover.

The cutting edge 3G pitch supports pupils at Kings Academy, Ringmer AFC’s four senior squads, a veterans team, the newly formed ladies’ team and RRJFC, providing a pathway from junior to senior football to realise a key project objective - Upwards of 700 players a week are now using the pitch to train and play!

With dedicated seating and viewing areas, a fantastic bar with Sky Sports, and an on-site kiosk, spectators can make the most of match days while generating additional revenue for the club through their food and drink purchases.

Witnessing first-hand the buzz of match day, we’re thrilled to see the success Ringmer AFC are making of their new facility, future-proofing football with a truly thriving hub that will benefit Ringmer and the wider community for years to come.

The No.1 Choice for Football Club Relocation

S&C Slatter have extensive experience in sports club relocation.

With in-house expertise across design, planning, construction and maintenance, we’ll take care of the process from start to finish. Get in touch to talk to our team.

Call 01635 34521 or email info@sandcslatter.com