Woodlands became a sports facility in the late 1980s when Pearl Assurance moved its main operation from London to Peterborough and provided sport and recreation facilities for its staff; building a large sports building with hall, gym, squash courts and snooker room along with extensive social areas. The building closed in 2005 although the pitches and outdoor facilities remained in use for a few more years.

Following complex negotiation with the previous leaseholders and to  enable a return to community sports use, Nene Park took over the management of Woodlands Sport pitches in 2017. Part of the original site is under the management of a local care home provider, Country Court Care, who have built a care facility onsite - Castor Lodge Care Home. They are intending to demolish the existing large unused sports building to increase their accommodation provision.

Nene Park Trust is currently working on designs to ensure that sport can continue at Woodlands for future generations. Our plans include a new sports pavilion with dedicated changing facilities, community space and kitchen. We are also planning to provide a year-round Multi Use Games Area (MUGA) on site

New Sports Pavilion

We are working with local architects BBA  to design a space that will create a community sport facility, aspiring towards sustainable construction. The facilities will consist of a sustainable multi-use community sports hub and the design of the building will reflect these aspirations. This building will also be the Trust’s only public building in the Rural Estate area and may act as the base from which other activities could be undertaken in the surrounding landscape.


Plan of the new pavillion (above)                                                                                          Design inspiration (above)

We are also hoping to maximise the opportunities for the community to participate in sport onsite. Woodlands is currently home to Thorpe Rangers FC and Bharat and Bretton Cricket Clubs. The inclusion of a Multi-Use Games Area (MUGA) will provide winter opportunities for our current teams but also provide facilities for other sports including netball.

Castor and Ailsworth Tennis Club  are also planning to join us at Woodlands and they have well developed plans to enhance the sporting offer on the site.  These including five artificial grass courts (three of which will have environmentally friendly floodlighting), two pickleball courts and two padel tennis courts. The courts will be open to all.


Close up of tennis courts and new pavilion (above)

Full site plan (below) - Download a larger scale PDF here

If you would like to comment on our proposal please let us know your thoughts in our survey or by emailing [email protected]

The proposals for the demolition of the existing sports centre will be dealt with by a separate planning application from Country Court Care.

FAQs for the project can be found here