WORK has started this week to repair football pitches in Barrow that closed in November and the council say they hope to re-open the facility in the summer.

In November bosses at Pulse Barrow on Greengate Street said it had shut its football pitches due to ‘health and safety concerns’.

Westmorland and Furness Council took over management of the pitches alongside Barrow Park Leisure Centre in January after terminating the contract with the previous operator.

Following that assessment, contractors have now been engaged to carry out the necessary repairs to all the 3G pitches and started work on site this week.

A Westmorland and Furness Council spokesperson said: “Many sports clubs and groups made use of the pitches and the council has recognised the concern and anxiety that has been caused by the closure of the facilities.

“We are pleased that contractors have started work this week on repairs to allow the 3G pitches to re-open and we look forward to sharing more information about re-opening dates and meeting with clubs and groups over the coming weeks.’’

The MP for Barrow and Furness, Simon Fell, has said that he is ‘glad’ that work has started to refurbish the facility.

Mr Fell previously said he would work ‘closely’ with the council to ensure the ‘vital’ pitches are reopened as soon as possible.

A completion date for the work and a date for the full re-opening of the pitches have yet to be confirmed, but the intention is that the pitches will be open by the summer.

This comes as members of Furness locality board granted £59,891 on March 19 to go towards delivering new or refurbished outdoor mini pitches designed for football and other sports in the Central ward.

This is part of a new football foundation scheme called PlayZones Programme which uses investment from the Premier League, the FA and the government.

The Football Foundation estimates the cost of each facility depends on various factors including specification and site conditions. They estimate a new build facility will cost around £225,000.

According to the report, the programme requires partnership funding and are looking for a minimum contribution of 25 per cent of the total capital cost. The community development team has submitted an expression of interest which has been successful.

Councillor Niyall Phillips (Hawcoat and Newbarns, Conservative) said the potential football foundation facility would be a ‘much needed addition’ to the area.

The council is arranging discussions after Easter with clubs and groups who had been using the pitches next to Barrow Leisure Centre prior to the closure, to keep them informed and to discuss future bookings.

The council say anyone who would like to be kept informed about the re-opening or to discuss future use of the pitches can email