Chairman Chat - JUNE


So, next Saturday we will host our annual presentation, the highlight of the season for me, as it is an event where everyone comes together to celebrate the efforts of our players.

As this will be my last Chairman Chat of the season, I thought what better way to show how amazing our football club is, than how it has developed during 2022-23, showing you the breakdown of our players.

Yearly demographics figures, yet to be published for the 2022-23 season, shows how we have had growth for the 8th year in a row with a total of 456 children signed on at Port of Bristol Youth Football Club, a 12% increase from the season before.

As a committee we have worked tirelessly throughout the season to continue to ensure we are at the forefront locally and different to the majority of other grassroot clubs. Things such as the giving POTW trophies, that players keep, providing food after home fixtures for both teams, these are just some of the things which sets us apart from others clubs and allows us to retain and grow. 

Despite losing our U15s and the natural progression of the U18 team at the end of the 2021-22 season we still increased numbers into our ranks by 52 players, with growth in girls playing football at Port being nothing short of unbelievable.

Girls At Port

This is something that I really wanted to push when I became Chairman in 2021, ensuring we cater for everyone and the obvious changes that will naturally arise with young female players playing in mix teams. The creation of girl only squads has not only allowed new players to experience football for the first time but also given those players already at the club an opportunity to see the game with a different pair of eyes. This insight into that side of the game is very important for their development as they are likely to move into that setting later on in their footballing journey.

  • 24 new girls have started playing football at Port of Bristol Youth Football Club, an increase of 220% from numbers signed on in the 2021-22 season.
Personally, being involved with the start up of both our U6 and U11/U12 girls teams has been amazing and an experience that has improved me as a coach. We did also developed a U9/U10 squad, under the stewardship of Mark Sage and will look to build all these teams further as well as creating newer age groups as we move into next season, setting a projected target of 50 girls playing at Port of Bristol Youth in 2023-24.

I would also like to thank Mat Daley and Craig Poole who have helped myself and Mark within these squads during the course of the season.
Siblings Joining The Club

Growth in the number of siblings that are now here is a clear indicator that parents are predominantly happy and making decisions to introduce a child or transferring their children from other clubs to play at Port of Bristol and play with other family members.

Last season we had a total of 95 children at Port of Bristol Youth who had a sibling playing alongside them or within another team. This was stretched across 44 families and shows that there is a trust and now rooted affiliations throughout our teams at the club.

BAME Playing At Port

In the 2022-23 season we had 54 players whose parents said their child was from one of the following ethnic groups.

  • Black/Black British 
  • Asian/Asian British
  • Mixed/Multiple Ethnic Group
  • Others
Although this amounts to a 10% increase of children playing football compared to 2021-22 season (49 children to 54) as a whole the number of players at the club who are BAME stands at 12% for the second season in a row.

  • Comparing this to data release from the 2021 Census, the population in our ward that are from BAME, stands at 8.4%. This show locally we are 3.6% higher.
  • Bristol's BAME population currently stands around 19%.
Our Players By Postcode

Our players span over 23 different postcodes and as expected, like previous season, the majority of these come from 3 prominent areas in BS11, BS10 and BS9.

For the second consecutive season these three postcode amounted to 79% of all children playing at Port of Bristol Youth Football Club. 
Final Thought...

I am, of course, immensely proud of everyone involved this season, and that’s a large number when you consider the size of our club. Our eighth season completed and we've got this far by a few very committed people pulling together, creating a community and a football family.

Sometimes this gets lost, appropriate considerations go missing, but let's all remember to pull together and see just why and what is being provided.

For some, Saturday's presentation will be their first and the first of many, for others, their last as their youth journey closes at Port of Bristol Youth.

For this reason, I hope to see as many of you as possible next Saturday, celebrating these amazing children.

Thanks, Chris