On Christmas Day 1917, two women’s teams from Munitions factories took to the Hereford football pitch in front of a crowd of thousands. They raised huge amounts of money for the war effort and the local soldiers fighting miles away from home.
In 1921 women’s professional football was banned by the Football Association, the game was deemed ‘unsuitable for females and (it) ought not to be encouraged.’ The decision was rescinded 50 years later. Female footballers are now being recognised for their skill and talents and are again commanding the recognition they deserve.
The event aims to raise awareness of women’s struggles through history to gain equality and also to celebrate how our local communities have supported and encouraged sport and, in particular, women’s football in Herefordshire. The day will combine sport, art, and social history and we aim to make it fun, informative, and thought-provoking and, most importantly, a great day out for people of all ages.
It will kick off with a women’s football tournament and we are organising a host of other activities to run alongside the action on the pitch. An art competition that responds to women in sport will be exhibited at Edgar Street and judged by professional artists.
Rotherwas Together and Herefordshire Lore are putting an exhibition about the ROF Rotherwas footballing pioneers together and there will be displays from local sports clubs, community groups, and charities plus food and drink.
We are delighted that Hereford Football Club has agreed to host the day. Jonathan Nash, the Hereford FC Community Engagement Manager, is organising local teams to participate in the tournament and he’ll be rolling this event out to clubs and schools. We hope that the day will encourage people to come along to Edgar Street, maybe for the first time, and consider taking up a new activity which could help to improve their mental health and wellbeing.
To keep the event inclusive for all, entry will be free with donations from those who wish to contribute. However, we do need help. We are looking for financial support from local businesses, sponsors, and volunteers so it can be an event that we can be proud of and can develop in the future.
We’d be delighted if you feel that you are able to assist us with financial support, by donating materials, volunteer time, or a prize for our raffle. Please get in touch if you’d like more details or can help us with the publicity for the event.
Lin Mathias - firstname.lastname@example.org
Jon Nash – Jnash@herefordfc.co.uk Hereford FC Community Engagement Manager
Nicola Goodwin – Rotherwas Together – Rotherwas@hotmail.com