ATHLETES are making a rallying cry for the whole of Basingstoke to get behind them in a bid to win £200,000 worth of funding which will make a real difference to sport in the town.

Basingstoke and Mid Hants Athletics Club (BMHAC) is in the running to win a national prize available through a scheme run by Persimmon Homes.

The club, which is run purely by volunteers under the guidance of an unpaid elected committee from the membership, is bidding for the funds to improve the facilities it uses at the Down Grange Sports Complex.

To gain the funding, which will go towards building a new spectator stand at Down Grange, BMHAC needs the public to vote in support of the club.

The campaign with the most votes will be awarded the money by the home builder.

The club has already seen the benefits from funding from Persimmon Homes, having submitted an entry to the scheme’s monthly regional prize draw in October 2017 and won £750.

The money was spent on the purchase of three pole vaulting poles for use by junior athletes.

Now the club is seeking for help to win even more funding for more large scale improvements.

BHMAC committee member Sue Scouler-Davison said: “The initial cash prize for equipment for the junior athletes has been a great achievement for the club.

We’re hoping that with support from the local community we can make a serious bid to win the national vote.

“We’re encouraging everyone to place their votes and help us to reach this ultimate prize which would be so beneficial to the future of the club.

“You can go online every day and place a vote. It’s not just a one-off vote.”

Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council has already approved planning permission for a new spectator stand as well as changing facilities at Down Grange.

The club has raised more than £90,000 but the additional funding from Persimmon will help build the shell of the stand.

BHMAC, which currently has more than 600 members, welcomes all participants both young and old and is always welcoming new talent of the future.

Athletes train at Down Grange no matter the weather every Tuesday and Thursday evening from 6.30pm to 7.30pm The winner will be announced at a Persimmon Homes gala event which is set to be held on March 22.

Votes can be placed daily by visiting