THE second phase of a multi-million pound sports village on the edge of Thirsk has been given the green light.

The ambitious Hambleton District Council-led Sowerby Sports Village will create a multi-use site on land provided as part of the wider Sowerby Gateway development – using £1.5m in developer cash as well as £643,000 in European funding.

This week members of the authority’s Cabinet released £207,000 to create eight new grass pitches within the perimeter of the fitness track.

Over the summer work on phase one began including reclaiming an area that had been a landfill site, installing a drainage system, landscaping and creating 18 allotment gardens.

But as this work progressed the authority saw an opportunity to allocate further cash to begin work on the next phase - to create grass pitches within the perimeter of the fitness track.

It will mean materials currently on site can be optimised and the pitches will be brought into use for the community much earlier.

Council leader, Councillor Mark Robson, said: “It is hoped that this exciting project, along with the facilities at Thirsk School and Sixth Form College, will provide a hub for sport and recreation for all sectors of the community in the area.”

Future phases will see the development of a full-size 3G all-weather pitch.