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Wednesday, 11 January 2017 14:01

Spotlight on the success of the Wrexham AFC Disabled Supporters Association (DSA) in 2016

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With the opening of platform number one in the Mold Road Stand, 2015 had been massive year for us and it was important to follow that through in to 2016.

The year started well with Wrexham DSA’s work with the wheelchair viewing platform being used as a shining example to football clubs across the UK of how accessibility should be approached, as ‘The Accessible Grounds Bill’ was put through Parliament and the House of Lords.

Our Chair Steve Gilbert was also invited to Westminster to give evidence to The Commons Select Committee for Culture, Media and Sport.

In November we were overwhelmed by an incredible donation. Whilst 2016 saw the loss of many celebrities, we sadly lost a real star in Tony Millington. Tony along with Jenny and Paul Hayes had set up the original Wrexham Disabled Supporters Club long before the formation of the DSA. We were contacted by Jenny and Paul over some remaining funds they had in an account. With the help of Tony’s wife they were able to recover the money and present us with a cheque for an amazing £1558.
We would like to say a huge thanks to Tony’s wife, his family, and to Jenny and Paul. We are truly grateful and look forward to honouring Tony’s life with a plaque on the next platform. RIP Tony.

November also saw us hold a bucket collection at the Forest Green home game which we split 50/50 with DSA FC, so many thanks to Wrexham AFC, to everyone who donated, and who supported us in 2016.

We have had continued support from local businesses, AEC Engineering who regularly donate signed Wrexham AFC items to our cause, and from The Co-operative. 2016 has seen us build stronger links with the later as the Co-op continue to supply our wheelchair viewing platform with free refreshments, and donate raffle prizes including an amazing Welsh produce Christmas hamper.

2016 ended well for us in terms of publicity as we featured in a documentary produced by the FA, the EFL and Level Playing Field, on accessibility within football stadia. Wrexham DSA Chairman, Steve Gilbert was interviewed at the Racecourse Stadium as 99% of EFL clubs were overlooked for this piece.
Channel 4 News were also welcomed to the Racecourse by DSA committee members Andy Pierce and Nathan Davies, as part of their ‘No Go Britain’ series, and this will hopefully be aired this month.

Thank you to everyone who contributed and for all for your amazing support in 2016, it’s you who keep driving us on. 2017 is going to be a big year for us with some very exciting projects so please, stick with us!

John Mills