A new football pitch named after Aston Villa and England forward, Rachel Daly, has opened in Harrogate. The Rachel Daly Pitch is among the grass pitches at Killinghall Moor Community Park which have been vastly improved thanks to a total £79,000 investment from the Football Foundation.
The pitches act as the home of Killinghall Nomads Junior Football Club (JFC), Daly’s local grassroots club where her footballing journey began.
Earlier this year, the club opened the Nomads Daly Brew Café – also named after the local hero – thanks to an additional £25,000 grant from the Football Foundation. The café provides refreshments to the friends and families of the next generation of Lionesses lacing up their boots at Killinghall.
The Rachel Daly Pitch is one of 23 Football Foundation-funded pitches that the foundation plans to name after each of the Lionesses that brought home the UEFA Women’s EUROs trophy to both honour their achievement and inspire future generations of women and girls.
The Lioness legacy pitches form a key part of the Foundation’s HERe to Play campaign, which celebrates the its commitment to delivering facilities that provide equal access to women and girls playing football across the country.
The campaign launched earlier this year with the openings of The Jill Scott Pitch and The Ella Toone Pitch – named after Rachel’s fellow teammates.
Daly said: “It’s so important for girls to have a good first experience of football if they’re going to form a lifelong love for the game, like I did during my time at Killinghall. That can’t happen without a quality pitch that you can play on throughout the year.
“Thanks to the Football Foundation’s investment and some fantastic work from the club, I’m so excited that more girls than ever in my hometown will have the opportunity to kick off their football journeys on this pitch.”