THE masterplan to redevelop the Ruskin Drive sports complex has been handed a boost after it was granted £500,000 of National Lottery funding.

Three new floodlit artificial grass pitches for football, rugby, and tennis are among the new facilities that will be created at the ground in Dentons Green thanks to the money.

Plans for the transformation to create a 21st century sports village for community clubs were approved by councillors earlier this year.

Funding for the multi-million pound development will also come from private developers who are providing a compensatory package because house building on the former Windle City social club site is taking away land previously used for community sport.

The vision, revealed by planning documents in April, includes a new third generation floodlit rugby league pitch, a football pitch with spectator stand, new pavilion with changing rooms, squash courts, renovated tennis courts.

The St Helens Council managed Ruskin Drive site is one of 21 projects across England to share in over £7.1 million of National Lottery investment from the third round of funding.

St Helens Council leader Barrie Grunewald described the funding as “a huge boost for sport that will help even more young people to get active”.

Sport England property director, Charles Johnston, said: “We know people have a better experience of sport when they have good facilities in which to play.

“This is why we’re investing in St Helens Council to improve their facilities so they are more appealing to young people, and help us to get them developing a lifelong sporting habit.”