Whittlesey Athletic co-chairman means unfinished business following lockdown progress
- Credit: Archant
Whittlesey Athletic Football Club has already made strides off the pitch, from a new all-seater stand to improving the pitch, but it’s hoped the work is not going to stop there.
The club has made improvements to their Feldale Field ground since the coronavirus lockdown began in March, some of the works being self-funded while others requiring grants.
“Our primary aim has always been to provide a platform for everyone to play football as best they can,” Dave Moore, co-chairman of Whittlesey Athletic FC, said.
“We feel a more aligned, professional club, or two clubs under one body would give these people the best platform to do that.”
Since Moore and co-chairman Gary Munns returned to the club around three years ago, the club received £32,718 through the Football Stadia Improvement Fund to install new floodlights, as well as funding to implement Covid-secure measures at Feldale.
Whittlesey also won a £1,500 grant from Sport England and the Football Foundation in January to improve the pitches at Feldale, and have also finished implementing an all-seater stand to replace the temporary shelter in place last season.
“The idea is they can play almost as high as they can, and in the last couple of years, we’ve pushed forward to get ourselves into the United Counties League because a town our size should have a team at least at that level,” Moore said.
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“I can’t take a great deal of credit for the progress we’ve made. Gary and myself steer the ship and when there is funding available and avenues to explore, we do our best to get there.”
On top of the men’s senior teams, Whittlesey have now added the likes of a Sunday squad, under 18s and a ladies’ team, and talks have been ongoing with the town’s junior football club about joining forces.
Moore is proud of what the club has achieved so far, but with new training, changing and clubhouse facilities in the pipeline, it’s a case of unfinished business.
“The key is long-term success for kids in Whittlesey because they should be able to play football in their hometown from under 7s, 8s, 9s through to adult football, whether that’s male or female, abled or disabled,” he said.
“We’re proud of the teams we’ve got now, particularly because football has been a challenge for many years, getting and keeping players.
“I’m immensely proud. Me and Gary came in and it was a case of unfinished business. We might not be down there every Saturday, but behind the scenes, we are certainly working.
“Plenty of people thought we’d never get there, and to get so close to failure was a big kick in the teeth.
“We’ve got the teams, the players, and the avenue to keep ticking over nicely. It’s now a job to continue the progress off-field and take it to the next level.”