Football pitch faq
The new self-service system for football
How do I make a
Do I need to book a changing room and
why do I need keys?
How do I find the park and
how will I know which pitch I've booked?
How do I put up the goal nets,
I've never been shown how?
Why do I need to collect a permit
if I've already paid by debit/credit card?
What if there's a problem with the pitch or
equipment or changing rooms?
How do I know if my match has been
called off before the game?
Who is responsible for cancelling
When and how do I claim a credit for
How do I make a booking?
If you are playing through a local football league, they may
make bookings on your behalf. If that's not the case, you can
contact the athletic stadium and enquire if a pitch is
available on the date you wish. There are deadlines for booking and
payment. Weekend bookings can only be confirmed 7 days before the
day but you can ask for your enquiry to be pencilled in before
then. Your booking is only confirmed when payment is received and
the deadlines are:
For weekend games, you must pay by 20:00 on the Thursday
before your match.
For midweek games, you must pay by 12:00 on the Monday
preceding your match.
Do I need to book a changing room and why do I need keys?
Yes, you must book a changing room for all football bookings
(other than mini pitches)as the nets and flags are kept in the
changing room allocated to your pitch. You will receive a set of
keys for your changing room and it is your responsibility as the
- To open and close the rooms for the use of your team.
- To erect your nets and flags and return to the changing room
- To leave the keys in the key deposit box before you leave the
- To leave the changing room in a clean and tidy condition and
remove any litter from your pitch and the area around it.
- To open the emergency access gate for any ambulance called to
attend an injury on your pitch and lock afterwards. Not all sites
have a locked gate but, for those that do, there will be
a key with a red plastic cap on your key set.
- To report any problems with the pitch, changing room or
equipment to the contacts shown on your permit.
- To claim any credits due for your game if it is cancelled (see,
when and how do I claim a credit for unplayed games?)
You will be required to pay a returnable deposit for the keys.
This will be held for the duration of your bookings and returned at
the end of your series of matches, provided you have not failed to
return keys or there is no loss or damage to equipment
or changing rooms that is attributable to your negligence
or non-compliance with the terms and conditions of the booking.
How do I find the park and how will I know which pitch I've
There is a location plan showing all the park pitch grounds (not
just for football) which will tell you the road name and postcode
for each site. There are also plans of each park
available for booking showing the ID numbers of the pitches as well
as the location of the changing rooms and emergency entrance. You
can download these from the main football pitches
How do I put up the nets, I've never been shown how?
Written instructions on how to put up the nets are available to
download from main football page . If you need further
advice, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Why do I need to collect a permit if I've already paid by
You must collect your permit by the deadline for payment of
bookings or you may not notice errors in time for them to be
rectified. You need your permit as your identification on site, in
case of spot checks, and in order to apply for credits for any
unplayed matches. Any team that fails to collect their permit will
be unable to claim for that game.
What if there's a problem with the pitch or equipment or
We will do our best to ensure everything is right on the day but
sometimes mistakes happen or things may go wrong between our staff
checking the pitches and the day of your game. We are unable to
send out staff to correct problems on the day and in the worst
cases your referee may cancel your game as a result. You can phone
the Stadium for advice on what to do and they may be able to help
in some cases, for example, they may be able to advise you if you
may play on a different pitch if there's a problem with your own or
if you can use equipment marked for another pitch. If in doubt,
please call the stadium and they will do their best to help when
Please report immediately all problems that you have on the day
of your game to Bedford International Athletics Stadium on
How do I know if my match has been called off before the
We will check the condition of all the pitches on Friday morning
to ensure they are in a fit condition for play at that time. Any
pitches that are unplayable or their condition and weather forecast
for the weekend is strongly unfavourable at that time will be
cancelled by the grounds staff on Friday. League fixture
secretaries will be informed and details of pitch status will be
posted on these pages by 5pm on Friday. All teams and opposition
players alike can check the
cancellation update page before leaving for a game.
If your game is called off you must return your keys to
the key deposit box on the changing room allocated for
that game. Check the cancellations update page for details of
your time deadline to do so. Failure to return your keys to the
correct site by the deadline may result in a charge for a new set
of keys being deducted from your deposit and your claim for credit
Who is responsible for cancelling matches?
Before the day of the game the Council's grounds staff will
cancel matches if the pitch condition is such that they consider
play is likely to cause damage to the pitch (see above).
On the day of the match, the responsibility falls to the
appointed referee or whoever has assumed that role for the match.
They may cancel a game for pitch condition for health and safety
reasons and are obliged to complete the team's permit to give
details of the reasons for cancellation. If they fail to do so, the
credit will not be given. If a game is played on the pitch,
however, a claim for credit may not be made later unless the game
has been abandoned as a result of the council's negligence.
When and how do I claim a credit for unplayed games?
You must present your permit at the stadium to claim a credit in
all circumstances. There is a section on the bottom of your permit
to complete when you claim a credit. If you are unsure of how to
complete this, you can call the athletic stadium at the time of the
cancellation. Depending on the reason for your claim, you may have
to wait for the grounds staff to check the pitch before your credit
If a game has been cancelled by the grounds staff your game will
be credited providing:
- you return your keys to the key deposit safe on the changing
room allocated to that match. Check the cancellations
update page for details for confirmation of the time deadline
to do this.
- you present your permit at the stadium for credit either within
7 calendar days or before booking your next game, whichever is the
If a game has been cancelled by your referee on the day of play,
you will be credited for the game providing
- you have not played on the pitch, or
- a health & safety issue has arisen as a result of a problem
with the pitch or its preparation.
Shorter deadlines are imposed on matches cancelled by teams to
ensure that the council has a reasonable opportunity to check out
the reason given for cancellation while the pitch is still
If you have cancelled your own booking before the game, a credit
will be given providing:
- you present your permit at the athletic stadium at least
2 days before the game.