Case Studies

Lea Valley Football Club at Douglas Eyre Sports Centre

Lea Valley FC was formed in 2006 by two dads frustrated at the lack of playing opportunities available to their sons in their area. “We’d both just completed our Level 1 Coaching badge and my son wanted me to help out with some coaching” said Melvin Sullivan, Lea Valley’s Club Development and Welfare Officer. “We initially formed an adult club with the aim of adding a youth section which we did last year. We wanted a grassroots club that would eventually cater for all ages in the local community”.

Lea Valley FC started using Douglas Eyre Sports Centre as its home pitch in 2007 whilst it was playing a series of friendly games against clubs in the Asian Football League. In 2008 the club joined the Amateur Football Combination Saturday league and continued to use Douglas Eyre as its home base. At the same time its U14’s team was playing in the Cheshunt Youth Football League. Melvin believes that access to good local sports facilities is vital to the development of a club and the ability to attract players. “We love it here. It has a community feeling about it”. “The groundsman and staff are magnificent and could not be more helpful.”

The club has continued to thrive and next season, when they move up to another division, Melvin is looking to book more pitches at Douglas Eyre to accommodate the growing club. “We want to use Douglas Eyre for all our training and home games. We will need pitches for our U14’s, U15’s and adult teams. I like the fact that when you finish a game you can just walk off the pitch to hot showers, a bar and somewhere to get food”