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'New lights will enable Hitchin to push on'

22 Nov 2016
FSIF, Football Stadia Improvement Fund, Hitchin Town, 221116

Hitchin Town enjoy revamped facilities thanks to Premier League investment

Hitchin Town are now able to move up the football pyramid with the purchase of new equipment funded by the Premier League.

The club's new floodlights, installed courtesy of £27,924 grant from the Football Stadia Improvement Fund (FSIF), mean Hitchin Town, who play in the Southern Football League Premier League - level seven of the English football pyramid - now meet the FA National Ground Grading Criteria.

"The development here at Top Field will really enable the club to push on and progress up the football pyramid," said Peter McCormick OBE, chairman of the FSIF.

"Infrastructure improvements are so important to the broader development of teams up and down the National League system, with this project another great example of the Premier League's continued commitment towards grassroots sport, through the FSIF."

FSIF, Football Stadia Improvement Fund, Hitchin Town, 221116, Pat Rice
Former Arsenal right-back Pat Rice switched on the Hitchin Town floodlights

The lights were officially switched on by former Arsenal defender and assistant coach Pat Rice at a special event which involved a friendly between Hitchin and an Arsenal XI.

A percentage of the gate receipts from the match were donated to the Willow Foundation, set-up by former Gunners goalkeeper Bob Wilson.

The Football Stadia Improvement Fund is funded by the Premier League, delivered by the Football Foundation, and is the country's largest provider of grants towards projects that help improve the comfort and safety of lower league football grounds.

See: What is the Football Stadia Improvement Fund?

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