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Sports grant gives Kestrels a flying start

A promising football team has got their new season off to a flying start, thanks to a £250 donation from UK Power Networks.

From News & press - 14 September 2021 01:00 AM

Sports grant gives Kestrels a flying start

A promising football team has got their new season off to a flying start, thanks to a £250 donation from UK Power Networks.

Hawkwell Athletic Football Club under-18s Kestrels side is putting the money towards new balls, away kit and pitch hire for training.

Club manager, Gary Warner, secured his second Team Sport Award from his employer, UK Power Networks Services, where he works as operational manager on a project for HS1. His son Ollie Warner, 17, plays for the team.

Gary said: “The funding last year helped buy new training equipment and this year it will help replace kit for lads out-growing their kit and reduce the costs of hiring training facilities, keeping down costs for our players.

“We recently signed five new players and won all our pre-season friendly matches. In four friendly games we scored 34 goals and conceded two, so we’re excited to see what happens in the next season.

“The club is part of the community and our players want to play football with their mates. They are a tight knit group so I can’t wait to see what they can do.”

Their first match in the Southend Junior District League is on September 26. The team train on Thursday at Garon Park, Southend, also training on Saturday and playing matches Sundays at the home ground, Hockley Apex playing field.

As a supportive parent, Gary started helping with the administration of the club three years ago, then stepped up as coach and manager as his interest grew.

Gary added: “I’m a keen sportsman who went from doing the paperwork to coaching, attending the games, then stepping up as manager. I believe that I’m helping these lads prepare for life, teaching discipline and time-keeping.”

The Team Sport Award scheme is run by UK Power Networks to encourage staff to volunteer in the community and is aimed at promoting healthy living, teamwork and developing sports opportunities. In 2020, more than 60 local sports teams connected to staff benefitted from a share in £15,500.