Wiltshire Walking Football: From Humble beginnings to the FA Peoples Cup Finals
On Saturday March 24th 2018 under the guidance of newly appointed Manager/Coach Jon Hayton, Wiltshire Walking Football Club took part in the Semi Finals of the FA Peoples Cup Walking Football championship and defeated 2017 Champions Wokingham with a single goal scored from his own half by Captain Tony Norton.
On the weekend of April 28/29th 2018 they travel to St Georges Park, home of the England team to take part in the national final where the top eight teams out of over 200 teams will compete to be the 2018 FA Peoples Cup Walking Football champions.
Cllr Sandie Webb, Leader of Chippenham Town Council said:
“This is brilliant news for our local walking football team, they have done so well to get this far in the championship. We wish them luck for the final.”
Photo credit: Tony Norton/Mick Franklin
Left to right top row: Tony Norton, Perry Kinneir, Ian Wilkinson, John Floyd, Jon Hayton.
Left to right bottom row: Dave Heskett, Dean Herring, Alphie Archer.
Walking football started in Wiltshire on a cold October afternoon in 2014 with just 10 players. The session was organised and set up by Chippenham Town Council’s Stanley Park Sports Ground and Wiltshire Football Association. Three of the original players continue to play including Tony Norton who has been the driving force behind its growth working as a volunteer working alongside Chippenham Town Council, Wiltshire Football Association and Wiltshire Council.
They now have 14 sessions a week across the county, 470 registered players and an average 800 attendees a month playing Walking Football. The sessions are all about a recreational turn up and play for fun and fitness, aimed at both women and men over 50. There are indoor and outdoor sessions, days, evenings and weekends so hopefully something to suit everyone.
Jon Hayton, Team Manager/Coach said:
“The whole team have worked so hard to get to this point, we are so excited to be playing in the final.”