Former Muratti footballer James Scott had hoped to convert the area into two small 3G football pitches but, much to his frustration, was denied at the last minute by a hitherto unknown restrictive covenant on the land, having already invested significant time and money into the project. The covenant allows certain neighbouring houses to give or deny consent to any construction on the site.
The courts, which have floodlight facilities, are available to hire through the government’s Sports Division. However, they have not been well maintained with moss covering significant areas, making it dangerous to play on.
The facility has rarely been used since the Jersey Netball Association moved to Les Ormes in 2010, despite the lights being upgraded, its columns painted and surface replaced as recently as 2014.
When asked what vision the government has for the disused site, which sits behind the pavilion beside the athletics track and includes changing rooms and toilets, they confirmed that ‘the Sport Division is working on a new long-term island-wide Sports Facilities Strategy [but] the strategy does not currently involve any facility changes to the courts at FB Fields.’
It is unknown if there are any plans to clean up and maintain the site to make it usable for public hire in its current state.
FB Fields also provides the headquarters of government-funded Jersey Sport, whose mission is to increase activity on the Island and support local sport.
In the meantime, Scott is determined to push forward with his project, even if it means finding a different site.
‘Jersey needs a new 5-a-side football facility. I’ll keep chipping away,’ he said.