19th October 2016
In the space of a week, Bath City FC has seen a project aimed at taking the club into community ownership surpass its £300,000 fundraising target, and welcomed more than 1,000 supporters to its annual community day at home ground, Twerton Park.
Children and families gathered at the club's fourth annual community day – held on 8 October and sponsored by Thrings – where they were invited to ‘Pay What They Want' to watch the game against Eastbourne Borough.
The day will be fondly remembered by two nine-year-old boys from Combe Down CofE Primary School, who, as the team’s official mascots, were invited to join the players for the pre-match warm-up. They were then waved onto the pitch through a guard of honour which included many of their school friends.
A host of fun activities took place in addition to the match – which ended in a one-all draw – including a mini-match at half-time between secondary school children, organised by the Bath City FC Community Sports Foundation.
Elsewhere, rides in electric cars and on hover boards were provided by TopSteer Challenge, who also donated a third of their day’s takings to local charity, the Genesis Trust, which offers life skills, furniture and food to those in need.
In other community news, £685,000 worth of funding was successfully secured for the purchase of popular pub, The Packhorse at South Stoke. Thrings acted on behalf of the buyer, The Pack Horse South Stoke Limited. The pub had been designated as an ‘asset of community value’ under the Localism Act 2011 and now bought, will be refurbished and re-opened with funds from the share offer, which remains open for further public community investment.
You can read about Thrings’ role in two prior community cooperative buyouts of pubs in the South West: the Bell Inn in Bath’s Walcot Street and Peterborough Arms in Dauntsey Lock, between Swindon and Chippenham.