Youngsters at a County Durham football club are celebrating after an engineering group working on a major construction project in their town helped them out.

Nationwide Engineering Group has been getting involved in community projects since it was engaged by the National Railway Museum (NRM) as the principal contractor for the design and build of the Locomotion New Hall at Shildon.

The company, based in Amesbury, near Salisbury, has getting involved in the local community and has recently been in touch with the town's only local football team – Shildon AFC.

Nationwide Engineering has now offered to be the club's yearly ball sponsor to help with their costs to keep the club running.

The Northern Echo: The youngsters of Shildon AFC celebrate after Nationwide Engineering agreed to be the club's yearly ball sponsorThe youngsters of Shildon AFC celebrate after Nationwide Engineering agreed to be the club's yearly ball sponsor (Image: SARAH CALDECOTT)

A spokesperson for the company said: "This a wonderful organisation. It is entirely run by volunteers, but offers football coaching to more than 100 youngsters through hard work and dedication. Who knows, maybe a future England player may be among them."

When completed, the new museum hall at Locomotion will make the facility at Shildon the largest indoor collection of rail objects in Europe.

Nationwide Engineering has engaged with the local supply chain for the construction works, with more than 90 per cent of sub-contractors based within 30 miles of Shildon - some of the workers on site even live in Shildon.

The spokesperson added: "We feel this makes it a very community orientated project and we have ensured our engagement with the local community has been integrated into our project delivery."

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Community initiatives include donating aa defibrillator and outdoor furniture to the Holly Lodge care home and hampers to Shildon Veteran Hub, as well as offering creers support to Greenfield Community College in Newton Aycliffe.

Locomotion New Hall is expected to open spring 2024 in readiness for the Vision 2025 celebrating 200 years of rail history in the area.

To follow the progress, check out any of the group's social media accounts on Twitter (@LocomotionNH), Instagram (@LocomotionNH) or Facebook (Locomotion New Hall).