John Lyall honoured

Sir Trevor Brooking is set to open a new state-of-the-art football facility in memory of John Lyall on behalf of the Football Foundation.

The grand unveiling of the John Lyall Pavilion will take place at 1pm on Sunday 11 September at School Lane, Lawford, Essex, CO11 2JA.

Lyall took over from Ron Greenwood at the Boleyn Ground before two FA Cup triumphs in 1975 and 1980, when Sir Trevor headed the winner. He then led the team to the best-ever league showing in 1985/86.

Sir Trevor, the FA Director of Football Development,  said: "As a young player myself, I was exceptionally lucky to be coached by two of the very best coaches of their generation - John Lyall and Ron Greenwood. They were classic examples of how crucial the role of quality coaches can be in the development of technically skilled players.

"I'm sure John would have relished the opportunity to influence the thousands of youngsters who will get the opportunity to enjoy their football in the years to come. The John Lyall Pavilion will provide a wonderful legacy for all members of the local community to enhance their footballing experience in a safe and happy environment."

The £513,202 project will enable the local community to engage in a range of social and sporting activities that meet the needs of local residents, disabled visitors, and encourage people of all ages to take up new sports and enjoy safe, accessible facilities.

The main beneficiaries of the new pavilion will be partner club Lawford Junior FC who run teams from Under-7 to Under-18 level and have over 290 members. Established in 1979, the club gained FA Charter Standard status in 2006.

The new facility has four changing rooms including disabled access, and will allow Lawford FC to develop sporting opportunities for all ages, including veteran teams. The building will also be used by local schools, community groups and Lawford Lads FC.

The project was funded with the help of a £265,283 grant from the Football Foundation. Funded by the Premier League, The FA, and the Government via Sport England, the Football Foundation is the nation's largest sports charity. Since it was launched in 2000, the Foundation has awarded around 8,000 grants worth more than £420m towards improving grassroots sport, which it has used to attract additional partnership funding of over £520m.

John Duchars, Chairman at Lawford Junior FC, said: "After years of running the club out of a wooden shed we can't quite believe this amazing facility is ours. It will make such a difference to our football development programme for hundreds of young people in the local community.

"We are honoured that Sir Trevor Brooking, who has always supported grassroots football, will be officially opening the building for us.

"We decided to name the building in honour of John Lyall in recognition of his family's support for the project and John's dedication to the game in the area. John sadly passed away in 2006 and a tribute dinner in his memory contributed £27,000 to help get this project started. We are delighted that several of John's old colleagues from West Ham and Ipswich Town FC will be coming along to the opening."

Paul Thorogood, Chief Executive of the Football Foundation, said: "We are delighted that Lawford Football Club and the local community will have access to these fantastic new facilities and I commend the club and the Essex County FA for their hard work in making this happen.

"I would like to place on record my most sincere thanks to Sir Trevor Brooking for taking the time out of his busy schedule to support this project. His presence at the event will serve as an inspiration to everyone connected with it.

"It is fitting that the pavilion has been named after John Lyall who contributed so much to the grassroots game in Essex and still remains the last manager to guide a second tier side to victory in the FA Cup.

"This new pavilion is just one example of thousands across the country that the Football Foundation has supported with money provided by our funding partners - the Premier League, The FA and Government."