Up to 50 representatives of Nailsea and Tickenham Football Club (N&T) are using their daily exercise allowance to help support the most vulnerable members of their community, writes Tom Howe.
Led by captain Chris Gale, the club have teamed up with the town’s fruit and vegetable provider S&R Burchills, as well as their local Tesco store, to offer essential support in the shape of shopping, collection/delivery of prescriptions and even taking out people’s rubbish across North Somerset and South Bristol.
With two teams entered into the Somerset County League set-up, N&T are a completely self-funded club whose summer festival, ‘Frythival’, which normally raises in the region of £15,000, has had to be put on hold.
With football and training also halted, vice-chairman Jamie Smith said the club are inviting people from across Nailsea, Tickenham, Portishead, Clevedon and the South Bristol area to contact their team should they require a helping hand – and to help the volunteers keep fit in the process.
“We have reached out to a few different places and offered our support,” Smith told The Independent.
“It started off in Nailsea with deliveries to any people that were self-isolating, from as little as taking people’s bins out to running them up some shopping. We have had flowers and plants kindly donated by Tesco in Nailsea so we are dropping them off to care homes and people who are vulnerable too. It is nothing huge – we are just trying to do our bit really. We started on Monday (April 13) when our captain Chris Gale did our first delivery. We have had quite a lot of support so far and will be doing something every day.
“We do quite a lot of stuff in the community anyway and have made links through our music festival – ‘Frythival’ – at our home ground. We have not been able to do that this summer because of obvious reasons but normally about 500 people come to that.
“We know some of those local people are having a hard time. Generally, across the town, it is just so quiet. Nailsea has got more of an elderly population and it is the people without family close by that probably struggle the most, so we are trying to get to those people as much as possible. There is a local Covid-19 group that is working really well and we have offered our support to them too. If anyone needs anything, get in touch.”
The club can be contacted via telephone, 07525 161096, or by email: firstname.lastname@example.org