Berwick Rangers have taken the unusual step of writing to over 50 schools in the Borders and North Northumberland to ask them to consider ‘sponsoring’ a match, with a difference!
The club would like each of its SPFL League Two games to be allocated to a guest school, and on that day, the school’s students, their parents and teachers will be admitted free of charge.
Pupils will have the opportunity to meet the players and management, and take part in half-time activities on the pitch.
Berwick’s vice-chairman, John Bell, explains the thinking behind the gesture: “The majority of children and young people in the Berwick area have never visited Shielfield Park, for football or speedway. We hope that this initiative will give lots of people the chance to see a live football match for the first time, and of course, we hope they enjoy the experience and want more!
“Junior Season Tickets are available to under-16’s for only £5 for the whole season, so we’re hoping that the cost of getting youngsters into matches will not be an obstacle.”
The Club is also continuing its offer of free admission to any organised youth group: “Last season we had not only youth football teams but also Brownies, Youth Clubs and Scouts. With a generation used to seeing football only as a television experience, clubs such as ourselves have to get kids into stadiums, otherwise our fan base will continue to shrink”, said John.
Plans are already in place to repeat this year’s successful summer school, which had 83 participants over three weeks, and more initiatives are set to follow with the establishment of a new Berwick Rangers Community Foundation.