Statement: Leader of MK Council, Cllr Pete Marland:
“It is the most amazing achievement for England to become Champions of Europe.
The Lionesses are an inspiration to everyone and have shown that through teamwork, ability and hard work, anything is possible.
Like many others, I never thought I would be able to say that England have won a major football tournament in my lifetime.
I am so proud that Milton Keynes hosted four matches and played our part in the greatest achievement in English football since 1966, including attracting a full house at Stadium:MK for the second semi-final. I’d like to thank all the teams and supporters that made those matches so special. Yet again, we as a city had the vision and confidence to back the tournament when many others did not.
I hope the win will have a lasting impact on women’s sport and I’m sure it has both inspired a new generation of women and girls to go out and take part in whatever their chosen sport is, as well as changing the attitude of many others to women’s sport in general. Our host city bid promised to increase the number of girls playing the game and double the number of trained women’s coaches in the city. The Lionesses’ win is just the beginning of unlocking so much potential, so if you’ve been inspired, today is the day you can also make a difference and be part of a winning legacy.
Bobby Moore and Leah Williamson, that is good company as the only two England football captains ever to lift a major international trophy. Obviously, we are immensely proud that Leah is from Milton Keynes, and I think it would be totally appropriate that the very first person to be given the Freedom of the New City of Milton Keynes is the first woman to lead a national side to international honours and is from MK. I have asked that the Council start the process of bestowing the honour on her.”