Perfect pitch for football team

PERFECT, just perfect – that's what footballers in Woodbridge hope their pitch will turn out to be.For the riverside town's football club has teamed up with Otley College's staff and students to try to create the ultimate playing surface with the goal of getting a better pitch than that at Portman Road.

PERFECT, just perfect – that's what footballers in Woodbridge hope their pitch will turn out to be.

For the riverside town's football club has teamed up with Otley College's staff and students to try to create the ultimate playing surface with the goal of getting a better pitch than that at Portman Road.

If they succeed, manager Micky Stockwell will be the envy of his old team down at Portman Road, as Ipswich Town are generally reckoned to have the best pitch in the country.

But if Otley's efforts reach their goal, they will have benefited from an assist from the Super Blues as Town's groundsman Alan Ferguson gave advice and help with their game plan.

Otley College spokesman John Nice said Ryman's League side Woodbridge Town's pitch had been in a poor condition.

He said: "The aim of the project is to try to improve the playing surface and make it the best in the division and hopefully the country.

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"Our lecturers and horticultural students have been working with the club's ground staff and we are delighted to support the club and hope it will bring dividends on the pitch."

The arrangement will also benefit the college's students as those on sports courses at the growing campus will be able to use the facilities.

Horticultural studies lecturer Peter Bateman said work on renovation and maintenance had started on the pitch at the end of last season.

He said: "We are very pleased so far, though it will be two to three years before the quality is excellent.

"We are working with the grounds staff here at the club as a relationship because we have certain bits of kit or certain specialist knowledge which we can bring here and use.

"At the end of the day, we just want to create a better football pitch because that will mean a higher quality of football because no-one can play well on a mudbath."

n. Do you have memories of playing on the old, muddy Woodbridge pitch? Write to us at Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or email eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk.

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