WITTON Abion Football Club's junior membership scheme is going from strength to strength.

Numbers taking advantage of the many benefits on offer, including free entry to top-flight league matches, have trebled since the scheme was established part way through last season.

"They're the supporters of the future that will keep the club going," said Alan Jackson, a director at the BetVictor Northern Premier League Club.

"Clubs don't get as many people watching matches as they would like and everyone's moaning about people watching football on television instead.

"It's a matter of doing something about it. We should have done this years ago, we've missed a generation, but we've already got over 420 signed up this season and we'd like many more."

There are no restrictions on who can apply for a membership card, save for they must be under 18.

Here's how the scheme works and the incentives involved:

1) Free entrance to all league and friendly Witton Albion games at Wincham Park. Due to FA regulations, we cannot utilise this facility for cup games.

2) Available for under 18s (the only condition is that applicants are not 18 until after the season has started).

3) Parents apply for a membership card for their offspring (details below) and the holder presents the card at all games. This entitles the card holder to free admission, and a 10 per cent discount to all goods in the Witton shop such as tops and scarves.

4) When numbers justify it, an extra snack bar will be open in the stadium for under 18s.

5) Coaching sessions are due to start soon at weekends which juniors will be welcome to attend. Food and drink available for juniors and parents.

6) Card holders are encouraged to be mascots and/or ballboys or girls. To be a mascot, it is free of charge (previously £50), and the mascot will meet the team and managers before the game. Then they will lead the team on to the pitch, and line up with the players. Photos will be taken at all stages for them to remember the day. Snacks provided at half time, and they have a meal after the match (whatever the players have).

7) Already Witton have 425 junior members made up of Witton Albion junior teams, a team from Weaverham FC, Hartford FC, plus many individual applicants.

Besides the above, Sky and BT Sports are available to watch in the social club before and after Witton matches.

The bar will be open and food available.

Jackson says Witton are exploring more ideas for junior members.

"There are so many more things in the pipeline which we can't disclose yet, but by applying for a junior membership, and providing an email address for parents, we can keep people abreast of events in advance," he said.

All membership enquiries should be made to Alan Jackson at juniors@wittonalbion.com