The players representing Wattstown Boys and Rhydyfelin Girls travelled to Wrexham courtesy of Arriva Trains Wales and competed against other teams from communities in England and Scotland. Wattstown Boys were runners up to Kelty Hearts FC from Fife in Scotland while Rhydyfelin Girls were runners up to Wrexham Girls.
The Trust’s annual Home International football tournament involved Under 16 teams from each of the three Home Nations. Players were selected on the basis of geography and impact on their lives rather than on ability.
Speaking on behalf of the Coalfields Regeneration Trust, Programme Manager Ryan Jones said: “The tournament is a showcase for the Trust - it reconfirms our role in tackling head on the low levels of sport participation and high levels of inactivity and anti-social behaviour in coalfield communities. A key theme is engaging with young people providing support for activities that help divert them from the potentially negative influences by engaging them in healthier and more positive activities.”
He continued: “Locally, British Transport Police Officers have been supporting the Pontypridd ‘Street League’ at Sardis Road, that regularly attracts 70 to 80 young people from Graigwen, Maes-y-coed, Ponty Town, Hopkinstown, Wattstown, Church Village and Trallwyn.”
Geraint Morgan, community relations manager for Arriva Trains Wales, said; “We were pleased to support the young people with their travel arrangements to Wrexham. Sport is a great way of encouraging young people to lead healthy lives, make new friends, share experiences and bring communities closer together.”
The two day tournament staged by Wrexham FC’s Community Foundation was held on the site of the old Gresford Colliery, which is managed by The Gresford Trust. It was the scene of the 1934 Gresford colliery disaster - one of Britain's worst coal mining disasters where 266 men and boys lost their lives.
For further information, please contact Programme Manager Ryan Jones on 01443 404455.