It seems a long time since Linfield members gave their unanimous approval for the redevelopment of Midgley Park way back in March 2014 at a special meeting of the Club. This approval was to sign up to a joint venture project with the Belfast City Council as part of a major investment in its Leisure Transformation Programme, to develop and enhance the facilities around the new stadium at Windsor Park. This project is now transforming the area into a major sporting and community hub.
Alongside the Midgley Park development which this week will see the completion of a new 100 x 60 metre floodlit 3G pitch followed shortly by the new 200-seated stand and a pavilion, this major project also included the now operational ‘state of the art’ Olympia Leisure Centre, a new Olympia 3G pitch, a children’s park, access roads with dedicated parking for the leisure centre and a separate 80 space car park at the Midgley site. Work on these is commencing shortly. The new boulevard style access will create a ‘Windsor Way’ vista up to these facilities.
There have been some delays to date, but the entire venture project should be completed by April 2018. The good news for our manager David Healy is that the pitch is now at last available for first team training. It has been a very testing time for the team staff and players coping with inconsistent and nomadic training experiences for such a long time.
When completed, the facility will be a tremendous asset to Linfield Football Club accommodating first team training, Intermediate football, ladies’ and academy football teams, and will enable the planned hosting of various local community projects.
Exciting times ahead.
By Dr Cameron Ramsey
Linfield Football Club