‘Fans for Diversity’ to support Family Fun Day at Heybridge Swifts
Ryman Division One North club Heybridge Swifts will be hosting a unique pre-season friendly against Colchester United on Saturday 11 July with help from the ‘Fans for Diversity’ Fund.
Essex-based Swifts are holding a family day at the Texo Scraley Road Stadium ahead of the clash against League One Colchester. This will include fire-eaters, stilt-walkers and activities for children including face-painting and hair-braiding. There will also be a race between the mascots of both clubs, Heybridge’s “Streetly” and Colchester’s “Eddie”, and youth players from the two teams will accompany the first-team players onto the pitch.
The day has been supported by the ‘Fans for Diversity’ fund. The fund is part of the campaign jointly run by Kick It Out and the Football Supporters’ Federation (FSF), which aims to encourage and help with the facilitation of fan-led activity. The fund has helped Heybridge produce special t-shirts, balloons, flags, vinyl banners and pitchside boards, which will be used throughout the season, to show their support to diversifying matchday crowds.
Craig Riches, Chairman of Heybridge, said: “The fixture on Saturday against Colchester United is one the whole club has been working extremely hard towards for some time. It will be the first opportunity to showcase our exciting new commitment to the ‘Fans For Diversity’ campaign and the vibrancy which now runs through all levels here at Heybridge Swifts. We look forward to a great day out for all involved.”
Anwar Uddin, lead on the ‘Fans for Diversity’ campaign, said: “The ‘Fans for Diversity’ campaign is delighted to be supporting Heybridge Swifts in what is an important fixture for the club and it promises to be an entertaining day for all that attend. “Heybridge are keen to ensure the Texo Scraley Road Stadium is a welcoming place for everyone regardless of background as they aim to promote a fully inclusive environment for everybody to enjoy their football.
“It is also great to be supporting Cliff Akurang, one of several managers from black and minority ethnic backgrounds plying their trade at the semi-professional level, who has done a fantastic job at Heybridge since taking charge last December. Cliff is a good friend of mine – we played together during our professional careers and I worked with him at Maldon and Tiptree last season. It is fantastic to see him given the opportunity to create something special at Heybridge.”