We at Pontardawe Town FC were dissapointed to be notified by the Football Association of Wales that we have not been granted a Tier 2 certificate for the 2018/2019 season.
The club has worked hard to meet the Tier 2 requirements since moving to Parc Ynysderw 3 years ago and we have come such a long way. Unfortunately the club has fallen short and has failed to secure the FAW Tier 2 certification which is a mandatory requirement for clubs to participate at Tier 2 of the Welsh Football Pyramid from the 2018/19 season onwards.
The club was assessed against a number of infrastructure criteria including; safety policy & evacuation plan, covered seating, pitch dimensions, dressing room & sanitary facilities. Unfortunately we failed on some key issues which are mostly out of our control and as a result we will not be appealing against this FAW decision
The two key areas identified as issues are :-
1. Ground Services : The lack of ground based services such as water and electric has resulted in us not being able to use the changing rooms at the pitch side. These do meet the necessary criteria but are now falling into a level of disrepair as it has taken 3 years and counting to get agreement with Celtic Leisure and Neath Port Talbot Council. Despite being close to this agreement we are still not allowed to commence any of the work to provide water and electrics to the changing rooms and are not aware of when we can commence this work. As a result we continue to use the Leisure Centre based outside changing rooms which unfortunately are not deemed acceptable by the FAW primarily due to the poor state of repair as a result of continued vandalism. The club are therefore in an impossible position as the lack of services have also held the club back from any plans to improve our catering facilities, introduce a clubhouse facilities, provide permanent toilet facilities for spectators and enhance the road (leased from the council for 3 years but now overgrown).
2. Spectator facilities - A minimum requirement for Tier 2 is a 100 seater stand and whilst the club has a stand it does not have seats. We at the club has not progressed the stand purchase, which will be at a cost of over £20k, as we are concerned that there remains a risk that water and electrical services will never be finalised. We have though prepared a series of fundraising plans to secure the funding necessary when the time comes.
This failure to achieve the licence means the club has to remain as a Tier 3 club until such time as we can achieve the certification and this will prevent any promotion up the leagues. In addition, in 2020 the new FAW Tier 3 certification will be enforced and the above failure criteria will also mean the club will not be Tier 3 certified which will force the club out of the Welsh League and into the local Neath Football League.
What has been in our control we believe we continue to be successful at . We have one of the finest surfaces in the league here at Parc Ynysderw which is managed by ourselves on a voluntary basis. The club also runs over 20 teams from minis, juniors, academy, youth and seniors.
We will continue to do our best to work with Celtic Leisure and Neath & Port Talbot Council but we really need both parties to be more supportive and proactive in order to keep Pontardawe Town FC in the Welsh League which is where the club has played since 1947.
FAW Cymru Announcement of Tier 2 Licence
Our Mission : To build and sustain a successful community football club and to strengthen the bonds between the club and the community it serves.
Updated 09:18 - 15 May 2018 by Gary Thomas