New recruits boosted stadium clean-up
The appeal of AFC Wimbledon as a fans-owned club was highlighted on Saturday and Sunday with another fine turnout at our first close season work weekend.
Plenty of familiar faces helped maintain a tradition that started in the early days of AFC Wimbledon, but there was also help from new supporters, who had heard about the club’s values.
Tom Burns, who hails from Aberdeen but now lives in Surrey, has quickly taken AFC Wimbledon to his heart and he was keen to help out.
“I moved down from Scotland earlier this year and I am a Celtic supporter, but I have adopted AFC Wimbledon as my English team,” he said. “I have been to about six games now and I am getting a season ticket for next season. There is still a community feel here and you don’t get that these days at a lot of the top clubs. I had heard good things about the club and Dave (Dalchow), who I work with, recruited me for this as he is a big AFC Wimbledon fan.”
Tom and Dave were busy power-washing the terraces in the Paul Strank Stand on Sunday and our picture gallery above show photographs of other volunteers who helped out. Tom (left in the above photograph) is pictured with Dave, who attended his first Wimbledon match at the FA Amateur Cup Final, held at Wembley, in 1963.
Volunteers also came from far away to help the cause with Simon and Dave Peacey once again making the trip from Bristol on Saturday.
The club had assistance from a Dons supporter as young as 10 years of age too with Maximillian Wisniewski joining his father Bartek at the event.
Bartek, who was born in Poland, said: “I am a Dons Trust member and I wanted to bring my son along to this brilliant initiative because it promotes good values. We have been busy cleaning the terraces and I would sooner that Max is out doing something like this, rather than staying in and watching the television.
“Max came here to celebrate his eighth birthday with a party here. There were about 15 children and I know that quite a few of those have been back to watch Wimbledon matches because they enjoyed it so much. Last summer we went to a friendly at Woking and Max had a chat with Bayo Akinfenwa and got his picture taken with him. You wouldn’t get that as much at Premier League clubs.”
Age was no barrier for 76-year-old Gordon Butt as he spent hours doing his bit on Sunday, including painting the terraces in the Your Golf Travel Stand, and his wife Ruth also helped out.
Volunteers did a variety of other jobs over the weekend including clearing rubbish inside the stadium and sprucing up the car parks outside.
The work weekends started not long after the club bought Kingsmeadow in 2003 with a Stadium Management Group formed to organise maintaining facilities.
Tom Adam, who played a key role in our purchase of the stadium back then, was at the forefront of setting this up and his wife Margaret has made a vital contribution in organising volunteers ever since.
Margaret thanked all the volunteers for their dedication at the weekend.
“It's a testament to how wonderful our club is that so many of you are willing to give up your time to come along in an effort to make the stadium look so good," she said. "We got a remarkable amount of work done over the two days.”
The club wishes to thank all volunteers who helped out at the weekend, along with Margaret and her team, for organising the event.
firstname.lastname@example.org E-mail The next work weekend takes place on 4/5 July – a week before the first pre-season match against Watford – and more help will be greatly appreciated.if you can spare an hour or two or longer.