Northern Premier League side Mossley AFC have gifted the naming rights of their ground to Emmaus Mossley.

Last year Mossley AFC launched ‘The 40’ – an opportunity for local businesses, groups and individuals to support the club whilst celebrating the 40th anniversary of the Mossley’s appearance in the FA Trophy Final at Wembley. The flagship benefit of The 40 was entry into a raffle to win naming rights for Seel Park and the East and West stands for a season.

Following Mossley’s final pre-season friendly, the raffle draw was made by club Chairman Steve Porter and Manager David Fish who picked out ball number 15, belonging to proud winner Matthew Hayton. Despite the temptation to name the ground after himself, club Director Matthew chose to gift the naming rights to Emmaus Mossley.

On choosing Emmaus, Matthew said: “I’m really proud and pleased that Emmaus have accepted the offer to be included in our ground name. They’re a focal point of the town and an inspiration. Our values are aligned, with community at the heart of what we do. Companions at Emmaus have donated time to us as a club for which we’re extremely grateful.

“I’d encourage anyone who hasn’t paid them a visit to do so. A warm welcome is guaranteed and you can experience first-hand the difference they make, including working with Mossley SOUP who in turn support other local groups.

“Our Board of Directors and Committee are determined to be proactively involved in town life, positively engage with local businesses and groups and promote all that is good about Mossley. I hope that through the new name, we’ll be able to draw attention to the fantastic work Emmaus do in helping people and groups who are less fortunate.”

Community spirit

Emmaus Mossley provides a home, meaningful work, training and support to people who have experienced homelessness or social exclusion. The people we support, known as companions, gain skills, confidence and experience by working together in our social enterprise.

Andrew Kilburn, Chair of Emmaus Mossley, said: “Emmaus Mossley is delighted to be associated with Mossley AFC and the naming of the stadium. It is a very generous offer and greatly appreciated.

“Both organisations are committed to Mossley and its future development. We have worked closely together in recent years on a number of initiatives and believe we can achieve more in the future by ever closer co-operation. We look forward to a successful season for the club and for the town.”

Despite interruptions to the previous two seasons, Mossley AFC has embarked on a ‘whole club’ strategy. The plan includes offering safe, fun, affordable football, a clear pathway from junior football to the first team with emphasis on development, and embracing women’s, girls’ and disability football. The strategy also includes greater community outreach work, upgrading the facilities at Seel Park, and creating a sustainable, competitive team on the pitch who take pride in wearing the club’s shirt.

Find out more about Mossley AFC and give your support at their upcoming fixtures.