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DoF: I would love to be able to have a community facility

David Holdsworth on the club's training facilities

23 April 2021

As we head into the summer months the winter problems with training facilities tend to shuffle to the back of the mind, but director of football David Holdsworth admitted this week that it was an ongoing concern, particularly when it comes to long-term first-team planning and preparation.

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“I would love someone to come along and say that they’d sponsor a training ground,” he admitted. “It would be brilliant to build our own one, take probably two years to build, with a 4G, and an ability to do all the things we need to do.

“We haven’t had anybody do that so far. I would love to be able to make something like that into a community centre. I would love to be able to say to everybody, come and train here under floodlights, and I would love the manager to have the support to be able to train in those circumstances.

“We’ve heard Chris talk about this a lot, that’s fine, because as a manager you try and do your best, however tough things get. There’s a lot of things that’s happened from a legacy of, it’s not complacency, but it’s down to finance, we all know that, things cost money.”

“We aren’t the only club that faces this kind of thing,” he told us. “I was at Mansfield Town prior to John Radford, we didn’t have those training facilities, we didn’t have a second pair of nets when we had no money.

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“At that time, the chairman was a great guy called Andy Perry, with Middleton and Saunders, they were doing everything they could to support me, but there wasn’t anything in that area either. I had to go into Nottingham or Sheffield to train sometimes.

“When a guy comes along who’s a benefactor, willing to give you a training ground facility, that’s brilliant. Mansfield have had that. It’s something I would love to be able to give our players and club, to deliver a facility that’s beneficial to our club and the community.

“I would love our council, and whoever that may be, to come along and say we’ll work with you to do that. I would love people to say Carlisle’s got to move into the future with a facility.

“There are good people in Carlisle. I don’t have time to make those calls and sit in those meetings, but in the future I’d love to be able to sit down with council planning, or whoever they may be, and welcome them, and say let’s work together.

“Let’s find a community centre that we can have, that will break down these barriers, perhaps, there are barriers there. I’m not going backwards, I want the club to go forward. If we can work with our council and maybe get grants, I would love to be able to do that.”

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