PATHWAY which will help disabled football fans to enjoy sport at a Tadley ground has been officially opened.

The new path, at Barlow’s Park community football ground, gives wheelchair users the chance to access the ground more easily, and was created by the Barlow’s Park Management Association (BPMA).

A donation of £6,000 from Barlow’s Plantation Environmental Trust, (BPET), the charity set up to look after the ground, was vital for the completion of the pathway and trustees of BPET were among those at the official opening.

They were joined by Councillor David Leeks, chairman of Tadley Town Council, pictured, who is a wheelchair user himself.

A ribbon was cut at the entrance to the new path just before kick-off of the FA Cup extra preliminary round match between home club Tadley Calleva and Ascot United, which ended in a draw.

Cllr Jo Slimin, chairman of BPMA, said “This is the second year that we have hosted an FA Cup match here, and we wish Tadley Calleva well in the new season in the Wessex League.

“The completion of the new path marks a further milestone in improving the facilities at Barlow’s Park and means that local football can now be enjoyed by all.

“We have limited pitches here in Tadley and know that there is a need for more – not just for football but other sports too. We aim to continue improving the facilities but this costs money.

“We need to find additional funding to achieve our objectives over and above the day-to-day running costs. So we are very grateful to those who do support us, like the generous grant made by BPET towards the cost of the path, hence why we wanted to mark their contribution.”