A grassroots football club will start the season in top gear after generous sponsorship from fuel and forecourt specialists Exelby Services.
The sponsorship from Exelby Services means that every child in all 20 Bedale Juniors teams will receive a new kit this summer, as well as any new joiners over the next three years.
Managing Director Rob Exelby visited Bedale’s Dobson’s Field ground to see the first of the kits handed out.
He said: “During lockdown everyone, including young people, were having to spend a lot of time cooped up indoors so it’s great that we can now enjoy outdoor activities.
“Many of our staff have kids and grandkids at the club so this is a way of giving something back to the area and staff to thank them for their support.”
His grandfather, Ron Exelby, opened the family’s first petrol station in the 1940s on the A1 at Londonderry, North Yorkshire.
The business expanded and now employs nearly 100 people at five sites across the North operating Shell forecourt and truckstop services, including at Coneygarth just a short distance from that original garage.
Like Exelby Services, Bedale Juniors has also seen major expansion over the years and now caters for 400 children aged from 3-18.
Club Chairman Alan Moodie said: “The recent success of the lionesses means we’re expecting a further surge in children wanting to play football but in the current climate a new kit may have proved unaffordable for some families.
“This generous sponsorship means every child, whatever their home circumstances, can enjoy the thrill of running onto the field with their friends all wearing the same great new kit.”
As a thank you to Rob, the club presented an adult-size Bedale Juniors shirt for Rob, and one for his four-year-old daughter, Imogen.