Health and wellbeing

Funding level: £5,001 to £10,000


For a period of over 15 years, a piece of derelict grass lay dormant in the heart of an area that had nothing for young people to do. It had previously been used as a rugby pitch for use by the former Withins School - but had sat overgrown, under-used and defunct smack bang in the middle of Breightmet - a neighbourhood that desperately needed something or somewhere for the children & young people to burn off their excess energy in a positive, productive manner - and that's where Breightmet Wanderers AFC stepped in...

Founded in 2009, our great Club was started when a couple of grandparents grew so frustrated living next to the infamous Rocket Pub - with the anti-social behaviour being displayed by young people as tender as 8 years old. So they decided to offer to get a football and take them onto the old Top o 'Brow Primary School for a kickabout - and that was the start of the legacy they have now made. Because roll forward nearly 10 years and we now have over 180+ children & young people pulling on our famous red shirt and representing the
Club that is at the 'heart' of their community. Now that's progress - but we do not want to stop there!

We are unfortunate to live in an area where poverty is rife, children are sometimes left to their own devices and their behaviours reflect the chaotic lifestyle they must endure within their living environment. But Breightmet Wanderers AFC came along and offered them a 'release' - a camaradire and sense of family spirit - and we have developed over the years to be more akin to social workers, community leaders and confidantes than football coaches and volunteers. But with the backing of a strong Committee and a desire to ensure that ALL children & young people in Breightmet can access our services, we have always dreamt of our own piece of land that we can call 'home' and in August 2017, that came to fruition...

After years of debate, discussion and despair, we finally secured the lease of that said piece of derelict land - and it is now formally known as DOLAN PARK - the Home of Breightmet Wanderers AFC. We arranged a huge Fun Day for the neighbours to come down and find out our intentions and it was fantastic to see the place 'alive' for the first time in years. We even had the No.3 al-time Bolton Wanderers legend Super John McGinlay come to cut the ribbon - and this is further evidence of the impact that our great Club is having on the local community.

But now is the time to push on. Having been unloved for so many years, there is a lot of work that is required to make this a venue that the children can access all-year round. The Club have spent money on repairing the fencing, trying to get the pitch playable in relation to drainage, cutting the grass back, tidying the bushes - the list goes on - and we are always encouraging the players, parents, supporters, friends & family to get involved - as this is a true 'family' club that are all-inclusive and always looking to improve the life chances of our members. We now have teams ranging from an Open Age team (made up mainly by young men that joined us at the start in 2009) through the Under 18's. 17's 16's - all the way down to a Tweenies team that really love running around and learning the beautiful game. And all those teams need a pitch to play on - hence our application for this fund...

You may receive applications from organisations larger than us. You may also receive applications from groups that have far more followers than us. But we can assure Aviva that should you decide to award this to Breightmet Wanderers AFC, it will be monies that would be cherished. Funds that will be put to the best of use. Pennies that will truly have the biggest impact on over 180 families and households in our area and who knows - with your help, that number could double within 3 years. That is literally hundreds of people that would benefit from your generosity and that would never be forgotten in these parts.

Breightmet Wanderers AFC

Moment of Pride

The reason I am so passionate about this project - and this organisation - is because of the impact it has had on my family life and that of so many others. I have seen young people become strong-minded, confident individuals which is exactly what they were not prior to joining.

Location: Newby Rd, Bolton, UK


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