March 6, 2023 7.00 pm This story is over 15 months old

Residents rally against 3G pitch plans on Louth field

The council say they’re working to improve sporting facilities

A protest and public meeting are planned as nearly 100 residents have objected to council plans to build a 3G pitch in Louth.

The planned pitches would go on the Wood Lane Playing Fields next to the Meridian Leisure Centre.

However, residents believe the pitches are in the wrong place and would result in the loss of public facilities and green space, as well as have a negative impact on local nature conservation areas and neighbouring residents.

They have also criticise a lack of consultation on the plans.

A Save Our Green Spaces protest is planned at the site at 11am on Saturday which will also call for Charles Street Recreational Area to be maintained and a fishing pond there to be reinstated.

A Town Council meeting on Tuesday will also discuss the matter at Sessions House, in Eastgate, at 6.45pm that day.

James Timson, a local football manager, said the plans would go against the government’s recently released Environmental Improvement Plan, which includes a target for all UK residents to have a large area of green space within 15 minutes walk of their house.

“It’s a huge shame that ELDC have wasted so much time and money on this application, when they should have been expanding sport provision in our growing town by providing a new site in a suitable location,” he said.

“They were asked by the FA for a playing pitch strategy years and years ago but have failed to produce this and all they have achieved/proposed is to destroy three full sized grass pitches.”

There are concerns local nature and a public footpath will be impacted by the plans. | Image: James Timson

Ward member for East Lindsey District Council Councillor George Horton said: “These would be a fabulous facility for the town and it will really benefit, however, it’s in the wrong place.

“There are other sites are suitable to take the facility but for whatever reason the council are hell bent on putting it on Wood Line to take away the last remaining public football pitch in Louth.

“It’s a disgrace.”

Other issues include light and noise pollution from the increased use of the site, fears it would not remain free to use, and a loss of walking space.

He said there were other alternatives which could be explored, including the athletics club on London Road, a dogleg at Monks Dyke and Louth Industrial Estate.

Layout plans for the 3G pitches.

Louth Town Councillor Lynne Cooney is calling for better care of Charles Street.

She said: “Charles Street, which is a public space and offers so much along with the pond (which incidentally the fishing community have offered free of charge to clear out and make it safe), has yet to be accepted.

“In my opinion, [ELDC] are abdicating their responsibility to the town.”

An East Lindsey District Council spokesperson said: “We are pleased to be able to put forward this application to invest in a new artificial grass football pitch at Meridian Leisure Centre, as part of our continued commitment to improving sporting and recreation facilities across East Lindsey.

“There is a clear demand for more modern, year-round, all-weather football and sporting facilities in Louth, and we hope that offering new pitches and training areas within the same space can help to increase access and participation and offer an enhanced place for residents of all ages to play, exercise and socialise together.”

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