In 2009, David Whelan, Martin Ainscough, Bill Ainscough and Lord Peter Smith took a journey to Bolton Lads and Girls Club to look around the facility.
By the time their taxi had arrived back in Wigan, the group had decided the young people of Wigan deserved a facility as good, if not better, than their neighbours in Bolton.
David, Martin and Bill, along with support from the Premier League and donations from Wigan Athletic players, clubbed together to put in £6.3m building costs to ensure the project got off the ground.
Wigan Council matched this generosity by identifying a perfect site on Mesnes Field, gifting it to Wigan Youth Zone and agreeing to support the ongoing running costs.
Aspirations for the future
Martin, Dave and Bill figured it would around £6million to build the facility and donated large amounts of their personal finances.
The creation of the Youth Zone was not only down to the businessmen who first conceived the idea – it has been down to a whole borough coming together to make the dream of a first class facility a reality.
Wigan Youth Zone’s aim is to provide the town’s young people with somewhere to go, something to do and someone to talk to.
More than just simply getting young people off the streets, it is a facility where they can be supported to achieve their dreams and develop real and achievable aspirations for their future.