The Thurlby Tigers story
We are a completely inclusive football club offering an academy for Reception and Year 1 children, u7’s to u18’s for boys and girls, plus men’s football.
The club was established in 2006 by a small group of volunteers. The initial aim (which remains the focus today and underpins the clubs ethos) to provide a safe and caring environment whereby children of all abilities could enjoy developing football and social skills. It started with some general training sessions for children from year 2 at Thurlby Community Primary School. Within a few weeks the group had grown from 6 or 7 children to 15.
It was clear the interest was there to form a team. A committee was formed and John Lenton was appointed as Chairman (a role he held for the first 10 years). A generous sponsor donated £1,000 to help with the formation and we were up and running. We entered our first team in the U8’s age group in the Peterborough Junior Alliance League.
We had a club policy whereby every player played equal amounts of game time in order to ensure fair development of all players. This policy remains today at the young age groups, with fair game time in the older ages. This means we don’t necessarily win every game, however it forms a key focus of our ethos and vision of being an all inclusive club.
In 2008 “The Academy” was formed, for children in Years 1 and 2 at school, this was created by Andy Baldwin and Kerry Whiteside, it proved to be incredibly popular and ensured we became a club rather than just one team. Year on year we now offer an academy for children Reception – U7 age groups. These children then move on to form the U8 squads of the following years.
Since 2008 the club has grown to see over 350 playing members and this year we will have the Academy of U5, U6 and U7 children alongside our squads representing every age group from under 8 to under 18 and the men’s team. We continue to work with The Football Association to develop our girls squads with the intention of building U10’s, U12’s, U14’s and U16’s squads.
We have had lots of success, we measure this through the development of our players – many have progressed to footballing academies. We hold a strong reputation locally for our respect and sportsmanship, underpinned by the club having won numerous Fair Play awards, league titles and many many tournaments. However our biggest success story is there for everyone to see when you see the smiles on the children’s faces at matches, during training and when they speak about their club.