Tag: Consett Juniors

‘I’m one of a great team’ says grateful Dave after winning award from The FA

Club official David Pyke, who this week won a national award for his contribution to grassroots football, today modestly declared: “I’m part of a team.”

As well as being secretary of Consett AFC since 2007, Dave has been involved with Consett Juniors since 1994.

But he was stunned to hear this week that he has been named Volunteer of the Year for Durham County in the Grassroots Football Awards run by The FA in conjunction with McDonald’s.

And he was even more taken aback by the tide of congratulations which followed on Facebook and Twitter after we broke the news on the club website.

“It’s great to win an award, but the response on social media, kind words and sentiments blew me away. It was like being able to read your obituary, which won’t be due for a while yet, I hope.

Andrew Pearson, Frank Bell and David Pyke at the old Belle Vue.

“I would just like to say thank you to everyone. There are a lot of volunteers at Consett AFC and I hope this award helps recognise I’m one of a great team.

“The seeds of a community club were set at the old Belle Vue, with strong influences from John Hurst, Tommy Connelly, Andrew Pearson and Anthony Robson.

“Then along came Frank and Dianne Bell plus a new stadium and we’ve never looked back.

“Above all, it is a safe environment for young people to enjoy sport, stay active, meet people and make friends. Long may it continue.”

David Pyke with former Consett AFC chairman and current President John Hurst.
david pyke

Long-serving secretary David Pyke hailed as a grassroots football hero

David Pyke, the long-serving secretary of both Consett AFC and Consett Juniors, has today been honoured by The FA and McDonald’s in the national Grassroots Football Awards.

He has been named Volunteer of the Year for the Durham FA area for the 2019-20 season.

Dave – who has been first team secretary for 13 years, and the administrative rock of Consett Juniors for much longer – didn’t even know he had been nominated until he received the letter to say he’d won.

The citation said: “In a season which was unfortunately cut short as a result of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, The FA and McDonald’s Grassroots Football Awards celebrate and recognise the inspiring work that has taken place throughout the 2019-20 season. This is our opportunity to celebrate Durham County’s grassroots football heroes.

“The FA and McDonald’s Grassroots Football Awards are for people who make a positive difference. It’s our way to celebrate the fantastic individuals who put their heart and soul into the grassroots game across Durham FA and say a huge ‘thank you’ to the incredible volunteers who inspire us all.”

As well as arranging first-team games and being responsible for player registrations and matchday admin, Dave liaises with the coaches and secretaries of all our teams from four-year-olds to over-40s. He even gets to watch games sometimes (when he’s not acting as ballboy – see above).

He joined Consett Juniors as an U12s coach in 1994 with ex-Consett player Barry Poole. They won the league in their first two seasons and were with the team all the way through to U18s, with a few of the lads tasting first team football under Colin Carr.

He became secretary of Consett Juniors in 2000, leading the club to become a Charter Standard Club in 2001 and Community Club in 2006.

He became secretary of the first team too in 2007, and his ambition for the juniors and seniors to come under the same umbrella became possible when we moved to the new stadium in 2013.

Consett AFC as a whole was also named as runner-up in the grassroots club of the year category, behind South Tyneside Ability Football Club, which provides a place for people with disabilities to play the game.

Consett AFC Chairman Frank Bell said: “We are delighted to receive recognition for our ongoing efforts to build a real community club around the facility we have at Belle View. It’s a mark of everyone’s efforts.

“A club is only as good as the people who run it, and in Dave the first team and the juniors have one of the best volunteers in grassroots football anywhere, not just in County Durham.”

“As a player, coach and administrator he has given more than 50 years’ service to the game. This award is richly deserved.”

Consett AFC’s stance on training after FA allows socially-distanced sessions of up to six people

Consett AFC is reviewing communications from the FA and the Government regarding permitted grassroots football activity during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Relaxation of some Covid-19 restrictions from 1 June means that the following outdoor football activity is now permitted:

• Playing football individually. For example, practice of individual skills or fitness activities;

• Playing football with your family or other people living in your household;

• Football training or fitness activities in groups of no more than six, keeping two metres apart at all times.

However, the club is looking into the stringent measures which will be required to ensure a safe return to football for our children, coaches, parents and staff.

At this time we request that all of our coaches, parents and players remain patient and DO NOT UNDERTAKE ANY COACHING ACTIVITY until such time as the club has a standardised safe approach as to how this will restart.

For now NO JUNIOR TEAMS ARE PERMITTED TO TRAIN until further notice. Thank you for your ongoing support, patience and cooperation.

Hundreds of young players receive awards at Consett Juniors’ annual presentation

Consett Juniors staged their annual presentation day on Sunday, with hundreds of young players receiving awards.

As usual, the presentations were held in three sessions at Consett’s Empire Theatre, with boys and girls from 32 teams, aged from Under-7s to Under-17s, receiving awards.

Performing the honours this year was former Gateshead captain and manager Ben Clark, a local lad who is now coaching at Newcastle United.

The fun day was a way for Consett Juniors coaches and parents to relax.

Ben joined Consett Juniors as an under-12, and spent two years with them, before signing schoolboy forms with Manchester United.

He returned to the North East to sign for Sunderland, and later went on to play for both Hartlepool United and Gateshead, making more than 400 appearances in total.

Consett Juniors Secretary David Pyke said: “It was a day marking the achievements of many of our junior teams,  both boys and girls, and the hard work put in by coaches and parents.

Slides, rides and inflatables were laid on for the funday, as well as the Newcastle United Foundation penalty shootout.

“We were grateful to Ben for taking the time to come to our presentation day and hand out the awards.

“It was great for all the young players to meet him and see what sort of football career it’s possible to have after rising through the ranks as a junior player.”

After the awards, it was back to Belle View Stadium, where the young players and their families and coaches enjoyed a family fun day.