Archives for October 2015

Foundation announce Basingstoke College as their latest Academy partnership

The Crystal Palace FC Foundation are proud to announce a new partnership with Basingstoke College of Technology, offering 30 boys & 15 girls aged 16-18 the opportunity to participate in a Football Academy programme whist following a full time educational pathway.

Players will learn and train at Basingstoke College of Technology under the educational expertise of tutors from the college. Staff from the Crystal Palace FC Foundation will be attending the college to assist with the training and some of the teaching modules, as well as offering opportunities with the Foundation at Selhurst Park.

The programme looks to challenge players’ football ability by competing at the highest level. The teams will compete in college league & cup competitions, where the most talented players have opportunities to trial at local semi-professional and professional clubs as well as being supported through college scholarship applications.

The education programme offered at Basingstoke College of Technology will enable players to study a full programme of GCSE through to A-Level or BTEC courses offered at the centre. Potential players are actively encouraged to visit the school and to discuss future career plans to ensure students are on the right pathway for their career choices.

Gary Mulcahey, Director of Sports Development, Crystal Palace FC Foundation, said: “We are building a portfolio of school-based sports partnerships across our London boroughs and wider as we have ventured in to neighbouring Hampshire to team up with a college based in Basingstoke. The idea is that we invest in the footballing talent of our surrounding area and provide the correct development channels for these youngsters to reach their potential within the game – whether this is at pro, semi-pro or grassroots level.

The framework for the Academy has proven extremely successful in the past and we believe these types of partnerships will provide the infrastructure for the young talent of the future. The programme will look to improve the technical ability of all participants and channel this into various levels of grassroots and club football.

The Academy gives the unique opportunity for both young boys and girls to combine the academic side of school life with a passion for football and hopefully it will produce some of the games top athletes in years to come.”

Trials and Interviews for the Football Academy will be taking place at Basingstoke College of Technology in Basingstoke with full details being available on request.

For any questions or more details please contact Darryl Taphouse at Basingstoke College of Technology on 01256 354141 or email

The Foundation’s Men’s Mental Health team, the Croydon Eagles, host Norwich City FC Foundation’s PDC squad


The CPFCF Men’s Mental Health team, the Croydon Eagles, host Norwich City FC Foundation’s PDC squad

As a celebration of World mental Health Day in October the CPFC Foundation invited the Norwich FC Foundation Player Development Centre to Selhurst Park to take a ground tour of the stadium and compete in a friendly fixture at our CPFC Academy dome.

The Norwich FC minibus was greeted by the Foundation’s Disability lead officer, Michael Harrington, who led the tour of the Eagles home ground which is set to host the Canaries first team on April 9th next year.

The experience was a great chance to share stories with a partner club in the Premier League and the PDC squad were delighted to be offered the chance to sit in the same dug out our Palace stars sit in on a Matchday.

After the pit-stop tour of the Palace home turf the players were escorted to the Crystal Palace Academy dome, where our resident Mental Health team, the Croydon Eagles take part in their weekly sessions.

The venue also doubles as the official training ground the of the Crystal Palace FC Academy which gave birth to young starlets such as Wilfried Zaha and Johnny Williams and ex-Palace superstars such as Wayne Routledge, Nathaniel Clyne and Victor Moses.

As an icebreaker the two squads were mixed in to smaller 6-a-side teams to play in a round robin style tournament that encouraged all participants to interact and communicate with one another. It was especially rewarding to see both sets of players interlinking with combination play, demonstrating a great spirit and showing why football is such a unifying sport.

After the warm up tournament the players readied themselves for a friendly match, in a 9-a-side setup, with the experienced Croydon Eagles team (who were off the back of a treble winning run) kicking from left to right.

The match began with a quick pace and both teams found an early rhythm, playing attacking football and moving the ball nicely through the thirds. Each team was determined and competitive but was excellent in maintaining a sporting ethic.

The Eagles team ran out winners but it was great to see the respect, camaraderie and friendship developing between the two sets of players.

Norwich FC Foundation Disability Coordinator, Mark Vaudin, commented: ‘I just wanted to say a big thank you for hosting us today, as it’s been a fantastically unique experience for the group. Hopefully we can organise more fixtures across our programmes in the near future.’

For more information on our Mental Health Football Programme, or any other aspects of our Disability programme, please contact Michael Harrington on 020 8768 6047 or



Our most advanced school sport package is here!


The Crystal Palace FC Foundation would like to introduce our new look PE and School Sport package headed by PE and School Sport Manager, Paul Mitchell.

The Foundation offer comprehensive support for the delivery of Physical Education and School Sport at all key stages, including PPA cover, PE curriculum and extra curricular activities. We are supported by The Premier Leagues Primary School Sport funding and are currently delivering in over 35 schools across our South London boroughs.

The philosophy of the Foundation is that all our local young people should benefit from the advantages of school sport and a positive and healthy lifestyle. It is proven that an active lifestyle can further aid academic attainment and improve behavior inside of the classroom – essential to a rounded school life.

High quality physical education underpins everything from daily movement of young people, right through to those highly talented performers. School PE is the first development phase on the pathway to elitism, as the schoolchildren from Oasis Shirely Park in Croydon found out earlier this year when Wilfried Zaha visited their school and discussed his progression from the school playground, to the CPFC Academy and all the way to professional football with the Eagles first team.

Our programme offers all children the chance to improve their physical literacy alongside developing social skills, decision-making and above all enjoying themselves. Our professional coaches are highly respected in the area and our Schools work is growing from strength to strength.

Participating schools also get the chance to be involved in CPFC ran competitions as the boys from Oak Lodge Primary School in Bromley found out when they represented CPFC at Spurs first team ground, White Hart Lane, back in May.

We also offer unique opportunities to come face to face with some of the Premier League’s most recognisable faces as the girls from Greenshaw High School in Sutton experienced when they attended the official 2015/16 Premier League Launch with Crystal Palace FC manager, Alan Pardew, and captain Mile Jedinak.

The Foundation offers an extensive range of breakfast, lunch and after school clubs in a multitude of sports, which links our talented youngsters with elite player centers and grassroots clubs.

For further information please contact:


The Crystal Palace FC Foundation Announce Their Latest Intitative In Eastern Ireland


The Foundation will be revisiting Ireland for the third time in as many years to continue to build partnerships with community run and grassroots football clubs in the region.

Following successful team ups with longstanding partners, Active Communities Network in Belfast, Northern Ireland, and new relationships with Ballina Town FC in Ballina Co Mayo in the West, the programme is now venturing on to the East Coast of Ireland to work with Ardee Celtic in Co Louth.

Ardee Celtic were officially founded in 1992. At that time the club had just two adult teams but have since grown to their current roster of 2 senior teams and over 20 schoolboys and schoolgirls teams plus a hugely successful under 8’s Little Kickers Academy.

In 2005 the club began playing on their purpose-built six-acre site at Townparks just outside Ardee – a facility widely regarded as one of the most impressive in the North East region and will play host to the Palace Foundation coaching and development sessions during the visit.

As a continuation of previous visits to Ireland the Crystal Palace FC team will offer coaching support, player and coach development and participation opportunities alongside Ardee Celtic staff to young people in Louth – plus matches and exchanges with other partners in North and South of Ireland.
Later this month CPFC Foundation ambassador for Ireland and former Republic of Ireland international, Eddie McGoldrick will be joined by Director of Sport Development and UEFA A License Coach, Gary Mulcahey, in a visit to Ardee to formally launch the programme.

Both Eddie and Gary have headed the Crystal Palace FC cohort in previous visits and the partnership is an active reflection of the growing relationship the club has with oversees partners.

The Crystal Palace FC Foundation and charity Active Communities Network are looking to build a legacy in the region where the young people of the project become direct beneficiaries of social inclusion through sport and the pathways of participation.

By training and upskilling coaches and working with young people of all abilities the partnership aims to develop and support young coaches and players alike to grow and broaden the game.

Conrad Clinton, Club Secretary, Ardee Celtic FC, said: “The club are obviously hugely excited by the partnership with the Crystal Palace Foundation. It became clear during discussions with the Foundation that they were really interested in a partnership of substance.

They’re incredibly keen to make a difference to our club and have an impact on helping us improve coaching techniques, which in turn improves what we can offer to children in the Ardee and Mid-Louth region.

We’ve always considered ourselves a progressive club and this partnership is great recognition for the work that has been done by so many over the years and is a real lift for the coaches and young players that really buy into what we do.

We’ve been to visit other partner clubs, Ballina Town in County Mayo, to get a feel for what the partnership means and how it can impact on a club. We were hugely impressed by what we saw.”

Conor Lynch Ardee Celtic FC representative, said: “I’ve been a Crystal Palace fan for over 25 years and am heavily involved in the Irish branch of the Crystal Palace Supporters Club. Alongside Ardee Celtic they’re one of my real passions.

When we made the initial contact with Palace I never really imagined that we’d get a reply never mind that it would progress to this stage. Their own youth academy is renowned for bringing through top class players and we’ll be hoping that some of that expertise rubs off on us.”

David Groves, Chair of Trustees, Crystal Palace FC Foundation, said: “Once again it is an exciting prospect to be taking the Palace name and the badge in to Ireland. We have a special relationship with our Irish contingency and the aim is to leave a Palace footprint wherever we work.

Certainly the work we deliver in Ireland is gaining great recognition and is testament to the Foundation’s commitment to grassroots football, encouragement of local/community based clubs and a passion for growing the game.”

Gary Mulcahey, Director of Sports Development, Crystal Palace FC Foundation, said: “Having visited a few countries in my role as Sports Development Director it is a pleasure to be returning to Ireland to continue the work we began in 2013. The idea is to leave a lasting legacy on the clubs and communities we visit, by building working relationships with young players and young coaches.

We have a desire to grow the game of football to become as representative as possible and by providing pathways for the young people of the football world we are investing in the future of the game.”



The Legacy Of The CPFC Foundation Fitter Fans


A group of Fitter Fans alumni came together last week at a benefit night in honour of Dave Ebrey, a current Fitter Fan participant, to raise funds in support of him and his family.

Amongst the crowd were many of the original Fitter Fans group who were part of the pilot project headed by Sports Development Manager, Rob Perrett, and were the first to comment on the importance of the programme in uniting the men in a common cause.

The Foundation believe that sport can be a great unifier among our Palace fans and the Fitter Fans project is characteristic of the great bond football can build between people who have a passion for it.

The Eagles Fitter Fans was set up as a means of engaging 40+ males in the importance of a healthy lifestyle and regular exercise. Unified by a love of Crystal Palace FC, the group go through a 10-week intensive programme that addresses common problems associated with men’s health and provides structured fitness activity to encourage a commitment to active living.

Steve Way, former Fitter Fan participant, commended the Foundation for its part in creating a long lasting bond between both the participants and the Club and between the cohorts of participants themselves. Steve commented that the relationship formed between Fitter Fans members is tremendous and testament to the quality and organisation of the programme.

Steve finished by saying: “If ever there needed justification towards the existence of the Foundation, then look no further than the extraordinary efforts with the Eagles Fitter Fans. A job well done!”

Dave Ebrey, also commented: “The Foundation has got me active again, playing the game I love and invaluably found me new life long friends, which gave me great strength and comfort in their turnout and support on Friday night.”

The group has continued the success of the Fitter Fans name by organising oversees tours to Holland and France and playing over 40s sides of a similar setup.

Thanks to the success of the programme, the Foundation are continuing to run sessions at Kent County Cricket Club for a small fee. The sessions are a relaxed football environment, non-competitive, but a chance to get some regular weekly activity and socialise with a group of like-minded lads.

If you are interested please see details below:

Kent County Cricket Club, Beckenham, BR3 1RL
£25 for 5 sessions
£50 for 10 sessions
Sessions run in 10-week blocks
Males 40+
Mix of small sided and 11v11 matches.

Rob Perrett, Sports Development Manager, Crystal Palace FC Foundation, said: “It is fantastic to hear that the Fitter Fans group are building a legacy of the programme’s success. The project delivered on exactly what we set out to achieve: improve men’s health, raise awareness of common health issues and create a mentality where sport and fitness/exercise are enjoyed rather than feared.”

The Foundation Champions ‘back to school’ safety

The Crystal Palace FC Foundation would like to thank everyone involved in the ‘Back to School’ initiative, which was led by the MET Police over the past two weeks.

Between 7th September and 18th September 2015 the police deployed officers from across Croydon Borough along with Safer Transport and the British Transport Police to tackle some of the issues youngsters face on their journeys to and from school.

The idea was to patrol hotspots & transport hubs as well as popular routes on buses, trains and trams in order to provide a presence and prevent or tackle crime.

The initiative focused on education, prevention, deterrent and enforcement.

The Foundation utilised participants engaged weekly on our sports based programmes to voice the message to our young people and highlight the importance of feeling safe in the local area.

Venues such as Canterbury Road, where we run Premier League Kicks, and Selhurst Sports Arena where we deliver Community League sessions, received information based workshops to underline the community safety message.

Our staff team, joined by local police officers, delivered workshops at a number of weekly sessions to inform young people of the new knife and offensive weapons law, as well as offer advice on keeping safe during their journeys to and from school/college.

The results were overwhelmingly positive:

  • No school related robbery offences over this period.
  • High visibility patrolling in crime hot spots areas and transport hubs, engaging with school children to heighten awareness and deter offenders.
  • Supplied handouts providing information relating to the new knife legislation.
  • Key partners and the Local Authority engaged with students providing further crime prevention advice.
  • Knife arch operations at selected partner Secondary Schools.

This partnership approach ensured that over the two-week period there were no robberies committed against school children.

This deployment was highly effective and through education leaves a legacy, which will positively impact on the school community throughout the year.