Local club launch fundraising campaign as they fight to survive

Burton Park Wanderers say they will struggle to see out the current season

Burton Park Wanderers are facing a fight for survival off the pitch
Burton Park Wanderers are facing a fight for survival off the pitch

Burton Park Wanderers have launched a fundraising campaign in a bid to keep the club going through the remainder of this season.

The Covid-19 pandemic is causing financial hardship across football but particularly at grassroots level.

And Wanderers, who play in Division One of the United Counties League, have now said “it is becoming harder to carry on”.

The club suffered a huge setback at the start of this season when their Emirates FA Cup extra preliminary round tie with AFC Sudbury had to be forfeited due to one of their players testing positive for the virus.

The match had been due to be screened live across the BBC’s online network, which would have brought in crucial revenue.

Now the club, which has been in existence for 59 years, has launched a Go Fund Me page in a bid to raise £5,000 to help get them through this season.

A statement on the page said: “Burton Park Wanderers FC are a community football club open to all.

“We pride ourselves on being open to anyone wishing to participate in fun team sport. We have teams ranging from three years upwards.

“We had a great season last year finishing in our highest position in UCL Division One.

“For the first time in the club’s history our first team achieved a place in the FA Cup with a home tie drawn to be played in early September.

“This was a brilliant coup for the club and created an exciting buzz for all involved especially when we discovered the BBC wished to film the game and we were going to receive revenue for that.

“Sadly, due to a player testing positive for Covid a few days before the game was due to be played, we were advised by the FA that we had to forfeit the game and lose any possible revenue from the BBC (£1,000), spectator ticket sales (£500), bar and food sales (£1,500) etc.

“We, as a club, were looking to secure this FA Cup income to see us through the upcoming season which costs us £5,000 (19 home games costing £250 per game).

“We stress we do not pay any of our players and no money raised on here would be spent paying players.

“Due to the losses above, Covid restrictions, new standardised officials fees for each game it is becoming harder to carry on.

“With the abrupt end to last season and the delay in the start of this season it has also meant no revenue for that period of time for the club.

“We want our club to survive to provide the existing and future youth teams a pathway to progress through.

“Without your help we fear this may not be possible. Please help us save our club and donate as little or as much as you can.

“If every person in Burton Latimer donated a pound we would achieve our target so don't think a little amount cannot make all the difference because it can.”

Anyone who wishes to make a donation can do so by visiting the Go Fund Me page at www.gofundme.com/f/stop-covid-destroying-grassroots