2021 LOCAL AWARD WINNERS ANNOUNCED
The FA and McDonald’s Grassroots Football Awards are for people who make a positive difference. It’s our way to celebrate the fantastic individuals who put their heart and soul into the grassroots game across England – and say a huge thank you to the incredible volunteers who inspire us all.
This season our grassroots volunteers have adapted to the ever-changing Coronavirus pandemic. They responded quickly to make football happen when they could. And when they couldn’t play they kept players, volunteers and the wider community connected off the pitch.
They demonstrated the true power of football, they stuck together, helped each other across teams, across clubs and showed what the football community could do when faced with uncertainty and an unparalleled situation.
On behalf of everyone at East Riding FA and the wider grassroots football community we would like to say a huge congratulations to all of this year’s winners – and a big thank you for making our county the best place to play and enjoy grassroots football.
The Spirit of Grassroots Football Award
Kirsty Brumpton – AFC Tickton
Kirsty is the Club Welfare Officer but goes above and beyond in her role. She personally makes sure the pitches are match ready, she cuts the grass and marks out the pitches and will do anything for the benefits the club.
Everyone at AFC Tickton knows they can rely on Kirsty to make sure they are kept safe and all safeguarding requirements are adhered to. During the recent lockdowns Kirsty also made sure club members were kept up to date with what they needed to run a Covid safe training session.
This award recognises that grassroots football is more than just playing. It’s for those who think about the whole player and volunteers as developing people rather than just producing players or winning matches. It is for those who support others others in a safe, fun and fair environment on and off the pitch.
Grassroots Coach of the Year for Adult Teams
John Hall - Wheldrake FC
John is the manager of the senior men's team at Wheldrake FC and is credited with turning round the fortunes of a once struggling side. Despite suffering from a broken leg John led his team to league glory and put his playing career to one side so he could concentrate solely on managing the team.
Dedicating countless hours to his team is nothing new for John and he is respected by everyone at the club. He conducts himself in a professional and respectful manner and want his team to be successful but not at the expense of fairness.
Grassroots Coach of the Year for Adult Teams
Phillip Bean – Cottingham Rangers Panther U14s
When parents and players talk about Phil they mention his compassion, his integrity and his willingness to go above and beyond for others.
Philip's aim is to create good people by creating a good environment. Winning is important but it is not the only goal.
During recent lockdowns Phil kept in touch with all his squad and ran virtual training sessions that covered a host of subjects. This was on top of caring for his two disabled children.
Grassroots Grounds Team of the Year
Dudley Cooper – Wilberfoss Mavericks JFC
Not only does he coach at the club Dudley has now assumed responsibility for the upkeep of the playing areas. Whilst being new to the role Dudley has made extra effort to attend workshops and learn new skills.
If not at home or work Dudley will often be found on his tractor cutting, rolling, aerating, brushing and scarifying pitches with him spending countless hours down at the ground.
The greatest compliment people pay him is that the pitches he produces are some of the best in the county.
Grassroots Volunteer of the Year
John Gibson – Bridlington Rangers Junior Football Club
John created the club in 1979 and has been volunteering his time for over 40 years. Credited with giving thousands of youngsters the opportunity to play football in Bridlington John is simply know as Mr Bridlington Rangers.
Everything John does is to a professional standard and he always makes sure that young people are put first. His passion for the area is renowned and he gets great pride from being able to provide grassroots football for the whole community.
Rising Star of the Year
Joel Wood – Hull Saints
Joel is credited with starting the clubs first ever junior side aged just 17. Joel sourced funding and recruited players all whilst trying to complete his studies.
His professionalism and work ethic are what stands out and he has shown exemplary leadership skills for someone so young. Joel is respectful and believes everyone should get the opportunity to play football regardless of their background.
Grassroots Match Official of the Year
Colin has been a referee since 1962 when he began officiating on the Hull Sunday League. He has now reached the age of 84 and although he isn't active as a referee, he continues to develop and support match officials throughout the county as a mentor, coach and observer.
Colin has been instrumental in the careers of many of the counties match officials, not only at local level, but into the semi professional and professional game.
Despite recently having a leg removed Colin continues to show commitment, dedication and selflessness and is a match official who is respected by his peers and the wider grassroots football community.
Grassroots Club of the Year
Stamford Bridge FC
Stamford Bridge AFC is the centre of the local community and provide an excellent opportunity for people to play and enjoy football in a friendly and welcoming environment.
Recently the club attracted funding from the Football Foundation to make significant ground improvements and only last year their centenary celebrations were curtailed due to COVID-19.
The club has supported East Riding FA initiatives such as the Mental Wellness Champion and work hard to ensure that they provide a safe and positive environment for all its members.
Grassroots Project of the Year
After a club coach sadly took his own life the club decided to make a commitment to improving the mental wellbeing of its 500 members. Initially this was done through fundraising for HEY MIND with over £11,000 being donated but the commitment was much more then that.
The club has provided provided training for committee members and coaches on how to spot signs of poor mental health in young people and they have encouraged all their members to be open with their feelings in the hope of reducing the stigma that surrounds mental health.
This is a club that is determined to support its young people with mental wellness now at the forefront of everything they do.
Grassroots League of the Year
East Riding Futsal League
This league is creative in its approach to making Futsal accessible to all. They provide opportunities for boys and girls to play the game and are committed to making sure it is Futsal for all!
They are an England Football Accredited League and recently obtained Kick It Out Equality status. The playing experience is key to everything they do and the league is supported by a group of dedicated and motivated volunteers.
Players and parents speak of a professional league being run at a grassroots level and many are thankful for having the opportunity to participate in competitive futsal.
East Riding FA CEO Adam Lowthorpe paid tribute to this years winners;
"The past 14 months have been particularly troubling for grassroots football with COVID-19 and the subsequent lockdowns affecting every part of the game. Remarkably though our grassroots football community responded to the challenge with grit, determination and compassion and found innovative ways to engage their community.
This years FA and McDonalds Grassroots Football Award winners are testament to the hours of dedicated service thousands of volunteers give to the game in our county. We applaud our winners and thank them for their efforts in making sure our county is the best place to play and enjoy grassroots football."