Rotherham is setting out its plans for the legacy that will be left behind following the UEFA Women’s Euros in 2022.
The town is hosting four games of the tournament, including a quarter final, at the New York Stadium in July next year.
Plans are in place to deliver a range of programmes to welcome women and girls into football, focusing on under-represented groups. The aim is to use football to encourage more women and girls to adopt and maintain a healthier lifestyle and to develop leadership opportunities to help women and girls grow the game.
The final aims include:
- Doubling the number of FA-qualified women coaches and referees in the borough.
- A 50% increase in the number of football opportunities for women and girls.
- Getting one thousand women engaged on a new bespoke digital platform to create awareness of playing opportunities
Rotherham has been awarded approximately £100,000 from Sport England to create a recreational women’s football offer, so that when Euro 2022 arrives the right opportunities and structures are in place to capitalise on anticipated interest.
Sport England’s director of sport, Phil Smith, said: “For Euro 2022, Sport England and The FA are trying to get ahead of the game. We know the tournament will excite the fans and the public, so we want to use that excitement to support even more women and girls to start playing.”
Chris Siddall, Rotherham Council’s Acting Head of Strategic Projects and Partnerships, added: “UEFA Women’s EURO 2022 is a huge opportunity for women and girls in Rotherham to engage in a healthy lifestyle through football. More than that, we all know that physical activity has significant mental health benefits too.
“We want to inspire woman and girls across the borough to get involved in football. Whether that’s watching, playing, coaching or refereeing, we’ll create a range of programmes to make sure the tournament has a positive lasting impact across the borough.”
To celebrate the launch of the legacy programme a film has also been produced featuring two young female aspiring footballers from Rotherham, Alicia Windle and Lucy McNeely, speaking with Val Hoyle, founder of Rotherham United Women’s Football Club.
In the film the pair ask questions about Val’s journey and experience of Women’s football. Val received a Lifetime Achievement Award for services to the grassroots game.
Tickets for the games go on pre-sale later this year and for games in Rotherham, ticket prices range from £5 to £30. A family of four can attend a game at the New York Stadium for £30.
images: UEFA / The FA