Sporting memories group at Harrogate Town awarded £25,000 in funding

Staff and volunteers from partners of the Sporting Memories Network at Harrogate Town's grounds.
Staff and volunteers from partners of the Sporting Memories Network at Harrogate Town's grounds.

A sporting memories group hosted at Harrogate Town AFC has been given a funding boost of £25,000 over three years.

Bringing the town together to reminisce about sport and share memorabilia, the aim of the group is to tackle loneliness and support people living with dementia and depression.

The £25,000 comes from a half a million grant awarded by Sports England to groups across the region who are part of the Sporting Memories Network charity.

The extra funding will be used to buy specialist sports equipment to help older people get active, and make exercising an important element of the group meetings. A sports coach will be funded as part of this drive, and more volunteers and staff will be trained.

Managing director of Harrogate Town AFC, Garry Plant, said: “The work that the group does is fantastic. They have got people there in that group who have great lives with wonderful memories to share, talking about sport. You can see the spark that ignites in people, it’s very worthwhile. Any extra funding which enables this to be developed is fantastic. We are overjoyed at the news.

“People know Harrogate Town plays football, but what we try to impress on everyone and Harrogate, is that we are not just for 90 minutes on a Saturday, we are here as part of a community. We want to be involved in as many projects as we can.”

The co-founder of the Sporting Memories Network, Tony Jameson-Allen, said “What is really key for us through this funding is to really make strides that will help visualise the benefits of physical activity to our participants and by doing this hopefully change their attitude towards it.”