Date published: 23/09/2015
Beechcroft Tennis and Multi Sports Club is a step closer to launching new walking football sessions for the less mobile after taking the top prize in Miller Homes’ Summer of Sport competition.
The Solihull-based club, which has become a new hub for walking football in the area, beat of stiff competition from five other clubs who had already taken first place in the regional round of the awards to pick up a top prize of £1,000.
Judges were looking for examples of how the sporting clubs in each community would make the most of the funding, how the cash boost would directly support the learning and fitness of its members and specific samples of how the money would be used.
The national judging panel, which included former Mr Universe and Miller Homes employee, Andy Polhill; former Leeds United footballer, Paul Reaney; and Miller Homes Procurement and Sustainability Director, Garry McDonald; agreed that Beechcroft Tennis and Multi Sports Club were worthy winners.
Garry McDonald commented: “We had six fantastic regional winners so selecting one overall winner was a real challenge; however we were extremely impressed with Beechcroft Tennis and Multi Sports Club for its commitment to helping people with mobility issues to participate in sport.
“The entry really stood out for its uniqueness and the real benefits it will provide to less mobile people within the community. Not only will it help with their physical fitness but provide a great opportunity to engage with other people in their locality.”
Until two years ago Beechcroft Tennis and Multi Sports Club was in need of serious repair. Following renovation of the outdoor facilities and the commitment of a small number of volunteers, the club started to thrive and since then has become a new hub for walking football. Over the past six months they have added five sessions and gained over 100 regular participants. This has provided many older members of the community with a place to go where they can make new friends and keep active.
Paul Murtagh, Treasurer of Beechcroft Tennis and Multi Sports Club, said: "Witnessing the positive effect this new sport has had, both physically and mentally, to so many people, has been a thoroughly rewarding venture for all of us.
"We are now keen to engage those who are less mobile by creating a special session for people who have suffered brain injury, stroke or ill health. The money will go towards promoting this new session including essential kit, equipment and specially trained coaches. We would like to extend our most sincere thanks to Miller Homes for their generosity and sterling work in creating this competition."
The five regional winners of the competition who will each receive £500 for their club are:
- Scotland – Peebles RFC, Peebles
- North East - Bedlingtonshire Golf Club, Bedlington
- North West – Knights American Cheer, Warrington
- Yorkshire – Hull High Fliers Trampoline Club, Hull
- Southern - Snipers Cheerleading Academy, Hounsdown (South Hampshire)
The award-winning UK housebuilder initiated the campaign this summer for the fourth year running on the back of successful competitions in previous years.
Chris Endsor, Chief Executive of Miller Homes, said: “We are pleased that so many sports clubs took the time to enter this year’s competition and are delighted to support those organisations in the communities where we operate who are providing fantastic opportunities for people to participate in activities which promote positive health and wellbeing.
“Beechcroft Tennis and Multi Sports Club is a great example of how physical activity can truly enhance the lives of individuals within a community. It’s wonderful to hear about the positive impact this funding will have on their club and also that of the regional winners.”
Name: Kirsty Bruce
Phone: 0870 336 5013