They have barely been in existence for four months, but already Blackhall Athletic are beginning to make their mark around the city’s youth football scene.
The Broughton High School-based club celebrated their official launch just over a month ago at a presentation night where their long-term objectives were revealed. On the park, they have two under-10s teams playing in the East of Scotland Soccer Development Association, while their under-13s side, who play in Division Four of the South East Region Youth FA, have already made it to their first cup final, which is due to be played next spring.
Club chairman John Adams says there was a widespread desire for a football club to emerge from the Blackhall area of the city and, with almost £7,000 raised through fundraising and sponsorship, the club was finally given the thumbs up.
Adams said: “Some of the dads of the boys who were playing for another club, Beechwood, suggested Blackhall should start their own team.
“They came to me and asked if I would chair the committee but I had to turn them down a few times because I had other things I was doing. They kept on at me and I eventually said okay at the beginning of 2012, but I said to them if we are going to do this, then we are going to do it right.
“So when the new season got underway in August, we had three teams fully equipped and playing competitive football. In the run-up to August, we had people fundraising, organising the coaching courses and we’ve now got a proper committee running at the club.” Adams admits the club are relishing the opportunity they have been given, with their base at Broughton High expected to be transformed into a multi-sports hub. With this in mind, plans to tag Blackhall’s name to alternative sports have already been earmarked.
He said: “Broughton is a fantastic facility but it is expensive. It has been singled out by the council to become a sports hub and eventually there will be about 11 or 12 different sports clubs based there, ranging from dance to football. We are trying to help develop the whole thing and we will play any part that we are required to.
“For the next couple of months we just want to bed everybody in. We are in the process of doing our SFA Quality Mark application and want to show that we are here for the long-term. We have been asked to involve girls’ teams, and maybe look at starting rugby and basketball teams as well, so there have been a lot of parents coming up to me and asking about this.
“It all depends on whether or not we can get dedicated volunteers who are willing to go on the necessary training courses and having the funding to do these projects. We can’t push things but we will grow in time and are working a lot with primary schools within the area so more and more people are beginning to hear about us.”
For more information on Blackhall Athletic and anyone interested in joining, can email email@example.com