Netball club score new kits thanks to award

Cash boost for Southwater netball players SUS-180502-134510001
Cash boost for Southwater netball players SUS-180502-134510001

Southwater Netball Club has netted a £250 sport award for new kit from UK Power Networks.

Tracey Hawthorne, a financial accountant for the electricity delivery firm, nominated her local club, for her employer’s Team Sport Award to buy team-mates a new team kit.

Tracey, who lives in Southwater and works in Hazelwick Avenue, Crawley, said: “We were ecstatic to win the award because we have been wearing various styles of old kit for ages. We haven’t all had matching tops up until now and it is great to turn up at matches looking more professional. It is also a big confidence boost when we are playing against other teams.

“I volunteer as the treasurer for the club and we normally have to ask the match players to fund their own kit and we get the cheapest red and black kit available. However, this award meant we were able to buy women’s fitted tops and also buy extras for other members that may want to start playing in matches at a later date. We are all delighted!”

Netball is currently seeing a growth in popularity, with record numbers of participants playing the game across England. Southwater Netball Club trains on Monday evenings at Christ’s Hospital leisure centre and competes in division two of the Mid Sussex Netball League, playing Wednesday nights.

Tracey said: “We are a ‘back to netball’ club and all abilities are welcome to join. We offer the first two training sessions free, to encourage women to try the club and there is no obligation to continue, but most do. Many members had not played since school and for some of us that was quite a while ago! We currently have 24 members, with a core squad of 13 that play in the league. Some members are happy to just attend the training, as it’s a great way of keeping fit and we also have social events, which makes you feel part of a fun and friendly community.”

The Team Sport Award scheme is run by UK Power Networks to encourage staff to volunteer in the community and is aimed at promoting healthy living, teamwork and development of sporting opportunities.

Hundreds of community and sport groups have benefited from grants since the scheme was set up. Last year £15,750 was donated to sporting groups connected to UK Power Networks’ staff.