| Teams | Retford FC | Season 2023/24


Retford FC announce link with mental health charity

10th October, 2023

On World Mental Health Day, Retford FC have announced a new partnership with the local charity In Sam's Name, aimed at raising awareness about mental health issues within the community.

As part of this collaboration, the In Sam's Name logo will be prominently featured on the back of the Toolstation NCEL Division One team's shirts and shorts for the remainder of the season.

Statistics indicate that one in four individuals will face a mental health challenge in any given year, with over 10% of the population experiencing depression at any point in time.

In Sam's Name is a North Nottinghamshire-based talking group dedicated to supporting men who are currently navigating challenging circumstances or have faced difficulties in the past.

The charity's namesake, Sam "Sponge" Fisher, tragically passed away on October 16th, 2021, due to mental health-related circumstances.

Despite his outwardly vivacious demeanour, Sam struggled with mental health issues that significantly impacted his overall well-being.

In Sam's Name serves as a vital resource for men in the community, fostering an environment where individuals can openly share their experiences and find mutual strength and support.

The group provides a safe and confidential platform for men to engage in meaningful conversations, emphasizing the importance of breaking down the stigma surrounding mental health.

Grace Woodhead, Retford FC's commercial manager, expressed enthusiasm about the partnership, stating: "We view this collaboration as a fantastic opportunity to support an immensely important cause and demonstrate our unwavering commitment to promoting mental health awareness.

"By featuring the In Sam's Name logo on our team kit and within the ground, we hope to inspire individuals to reach out for assistance when needed, potentially making a life-saving impact."

Acknowledging that societal norms often discourage men from discussing their mental health challenges, Grace emphasised the significance of the In Sam's Name initiative, adding: "In this male-dominated context, we understand that some may feel hesitant to speak out.

"However, In Sam's Name highlights the crucial message that seeking support and engaging in open conversations are essential steps towards well-being."

Retford FC and In Sam's Name are united in their commitment to fostering a compassionate and supportive community that prioritises mental health awareness and encourages individuals to share their experiences without fear or hesitation.

In Sam's Name hold fortnightly meetings on a Monday evening at 7pm at The Well, Hospital Road, Retford, DN22 7BD. For the group's latest news, go to insamsname.co.uk/news and, for any further information email, info@insamsname.co.uk.

(Story Source: Retford FC)

Retford FC secure groundname deal with SL2

9th September, 2023

Retford FC have announced a significant move forward with the confirmation of a two-year naming rights deal for the Rail Ground, located on Babworth Road in Retford.

The Toolstation NCEL Division One club has partnered with SL2 Ltd, a reputable local company specialising in commercial construction solutions and known for their commitment to supporting local sports venues and clubs in the region.

SL2 Ltd has a great track record in project managing refurbishments and new constructions of clubhouses and facilities that are vital to the local sporting community.

With over 60 years of combined experience in construction management, SL2 Ltd brings a wealth of knowledge and skills to the table, emphasising quality, safety, and sustainability in their work.

Under this exciting new partnership, the ground will be officially known as the SL2 Rail Stadium, keeping the Rail in the title as a nod to the ground's history and its adjacency to the East Coast Main Line.

One of the key aspects of this agreement is SL2 Ltd's commitment to enhancing the facilities at the SL2 Rail Stadium, making it a more welcoming and comfortable space for everyone who visits, including players, spectators, and the local community.

Retford FC Chairman, Chris Woodhead, expressed his enthusiasm for this new development: "This is another great step in getting the ground into a place where we can serve the community and will enable people to come and watch games in great surroundings.

"The deal with SL2 is another one of our exciting developments, and I look forward to playing our games and welcoming visitors to the SL2 Rail Stadium."

The partnership between Retford FC and SL2 Ltd is expected to have a positive impact on the local sporting scene, offering an improved venue for supporters and enhancing the overall experience for the community.

(Story Source: Retford FC)

A new era dawns at Retford FC

19th August, 2023

There are exciting times are ahead for Retford FC as the Toolstation NCEL Division One club welcomes two new faces to its board of directors, Chris Sly and Scott Lee.

With their combined expertise and passion for both football and business, Chris and Scott are set to usher in a new era for the club, focusing on both on-field excellence and the transformation of the Rail Ground into a premier sporting venue within the region. They join the board alongside current directors Pep Leone and Mick Woodhead.

Chris Sly, a familiar face within the local community, is no stranger to the world of football. Having played for various teams in the area since an early age. Chris has deep-rooted connections to Retford and a profound understanding of the club's values. He has since risen to prominence as a successful businessman, overseeing a portfolio of successful companies. Chris's involvement with Retford FC is a natural progression, allowing him to channel his passion for the sport into shaping the club's future.

"I'm thrilled to be a part of Retford FC's journey. Having a long-standing connection with Chris Woodhead for over 25 years, and as a Retford lad who has played in the town from Under 10 all the way through to senior level football, I have grown up with a lot of people who are involved with the club like Chris and Martin Woodhead, Will Tomlinson and Nathan Allen - where it's now got to a point that our own kids are playing together for Retford FC Juniors."

"The potential at the club is huge, from where it was when Chris and Kev (Swannack) set it up in 2015, the development has been great and I want to invest to further develop the ground and get in the right calibre of players to help us to promotion which is our long term plan." he said.

Joining Chris in this new venture is Scott Lee, Director of SL2 Limited, a construction company that has a lot of experience in transforming sports venues and club facilities. Scott's expertise has been instrumental in rejuvenating local sporting infrastructure, managing refurbishments, and even constructing new facilities from the ground up. His experience aligns seamlessly with the club's vision of creating a state-of-the-art sporting hub that caters to both players and supporters.

Scott is looking forward to working with the two Chris’s to drive the club forward, “I have a great relationship with Chris (Woodhead), we’ve not known each other that long but without sounding cliche, we hit it off straight away. We have a mutual respect and interest into each other’s abilities and work lives and I was drawn into his passion for the club as soon as he mentioned it. We spoke about how much I love football and with being a business owner and now a member of the surrounding community asked if I could help in anyway.”

“Football has been a huge part of my life from the age of four and to be able to assist in some way is an absolute honour, and to see my company’s logo on the training gear is refreshing to see and was a proud moment. From then in it’s become second nature to look for the Choughs score after my beloved Sheffield Wednesday.”

Retford FC's Chairman Chris Woodhead expressed his excitement about the additions to the board, stating, "We are entering a pivotal phase in the history of Retford FC, and the expertise and dedication that Chris and Scott bring to the table will be invaluable. Their shared commitment to excellence aligns perfectly with our aspirations for the club."

“I’ve known Chris (Sly) for a long time, and I’ve worked with Scott over the last few years and they can see my vision for the club and how much things have changed both on and off the field since 2015. They both share my ethos for maintaining a local club to benefit players and supporters from the local community of Retford and the surrounding areas and you’ve only got to look at our thriving junior section to see how that is progressing. With Under 21 football, Reserves, Ladies and even Veterans sides this year we’ve got the foundations to make Retford FC a key player within the community.”

Both Chris and Scott are aligned with Retford FC's vision of nurturing local talent while also attracting new players to strengthen the squad. Their dedication to creating a thriving community-oriented club aligns with the foundation laid by the existing committee.

With a nod to the junior section Chris Sly said, "The ethos of using Retford players is definitely one I'll be following. I want to help support the junior section too to make sure we have the right facilities and infrastructure in place for a pathway into the senior section for both boys and girls."

Stressing the fact that this will be an overall community project, he highlighted the need to bring in other local businesses to support the vision and help get more through the turnstyle on matchdays, "I want other businesses to get on board to help and support us as Directors and as a committee. It's not going to happen overnight, but it's going to be a great ride as things start to happen and we can bring even more success to the club."

Scott will be using his own skill set as he will be looking to help get the ground developed, "I want to help get the ground up to a high standard and somewhere people want to come and spend their Saturday afternoon's. We have some plans in place already which we will announce in due course, but we all want the Rail Ground to be a top sporting facility in the area."

“What we have here is a close-knit squad and we will hopefully continue with this ethos as well as attracting new faces from further afield, but Chris has demonstrated and drilled it into us what the club is all about and that’s what will also continue to happen. Already it’s great to see all the teams within the club are playing for the badge.”

“We are and will continue to work closely with the club’s infrastructure to strengthen the squad. There has been investment already and there’s also exciting plans in place which will hopefully bring more revenue for the club to grow. Several discussions have taken place and it all seems that we are singing from the same hymn sheet. “

As the club strides into this new era, the collaboration between the board, local businesses and the local community promises a vibrant future for the club.

With a focus on both on-field achievements and off-field infrastructure, Retford FC is poised to become a beacon of sporting excellence in the region.

(Story Source: Retford FC)