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Witton Albion forgo civic reception for promotion success to honour armed forces instead
FOOTBALL players celebrate success on the pitch this weekend by honouring the nation’s armed forces.
Witton Albion, promoted to the Northern Premier League’s top tier at the end of last season, plan to mark the achievement showing support for the club’s charity, Help for Heroes.
The Northwich outfit had been set to attend a party put on jointly by Cheshire West and Chester Council (CWaC) and Northwich Town Council, but have requested that both authorities support this Saturday’s gesture instead.
“A civic reception would have been appreciated but by backing our idea the councils will allow everybody associated with the club to be involved,” said chairman Mark Harris.
Both bodies have agreed sponsor Witton’s Premier Division encounter with Grantham Town, the team’s last home match before Remembrance Sunday.
At half time, CWaC chairman Clr Pam Booher will present Mr Harris with a donation to be divided between Help for Heroes and the Royal British Legion, both of whom will be represented at the game.
CWaC leader Clr Mike Jones and Northwich town councillor Terry Murphy, a former player and manager for Witton and currently the club’s chief scout, will join them.
Witton’s link with Help for Heroes dates back to 2010 when the players’ shirts were adorned with the charity’s logo.
“It’s a tremendous gesture,” said Kane Gunter, local organiser for Help for Heroes.
“Witton Albion is a first class community club with a good record for backing the armed services.
“I’m sure their fans will be behind the decision to forego a civic reception to help such a good cause.”
Clr Jones revealed that the council had agreed without hesitation to Albion’s suggestion, which fits with the authority’s decision to sign the Cheshire Community Covenant.
CWaC, together with Cheshire East, Halton and Warrington councils, has pledged to back organisations – both military and civilian – that work to help British servicemen and women.
“Witton can be proud of their promotion, and prouder still of the way they have chosen to celebrate that achievement,” said Clr Jones.