Established just two years ago, Lydford Foxes youth football club continues to go from strength to strength. Following the four fair play and respect awards collected at the Adrenalin Devon Junior & Minor League (DJM) awards evening in June, the club’s commitment to local players of all abilities has been heralded at the Devon FA Grassroots Football Awards. Held at Exeter Racecourse, the awards recognise people and clubs that make a difference to grassroots football locally, with Lydford Foxes being named Grassroots Club of the Year runner up.
Today, the club has more than 100 young players on its books, attracting players from across the local area. From north to Halwill Junction, east to Sticklepath, south to Dousland and west to Lifton, the club has come a long way since the days when it was a few Lydford lads and dads playing football in the village. Now, the club, which is preparing for its third season in the DJM, has boys and girls as young as six, leading to the formation of the Lydford Cubs, where coaches Asa MacIntyre and Allana Chick nurture the talent of tomorrow.
Asa MacIntyre, joint-founder of the club, who attended the Devon FA awards with fellow founder Gavin Braithwaite-Smith, club secretary Hannah Braithwaite-Smith, and treasurer Danielle Ansell, said: “We’re delighted to be recognised at the prestigious awards ceremony. From the outset, we were determined to provide opportunities to children of all abilities, so it’s great that this ethos has struck a chord with members of the local community. As we grow, maintaining this ethos gets more challenging, but we have a superb network of volunteers behind us. We might need a bigger trophy cabinet, mind!”
Speaking of outgrowing things, from next season, Lydford Foxes will play some home games in neighbouring villages. While the Cubs, U10s and U12s will continue to host matches in Lydford, the U13s and U14s will play in Brentor, while the U15s will be based in Lewdown. Of the expansion, Hannah Braithwaite-Smith said: “While it’s sad that some teams will no longer play in Lydford, we’re thrilled that neighbouring villages have stepped up to allow us to maintain our growth. In many ways, it recognises the fact that, while our heart will always be in Lydford, we’re very much a team for the local area.”
With pre-season training and friendlies well underway, the club is on the lookout for new players, especially in the Under 15s age group. Anyone interested should contact the club.