Furloughed worker sets up football club and kicks off charity fundraising

Shotton Colliery FC with Thomas 4Louis tyne tees
Gareth Coxon (right) and the Shotton Colliery FC team helped Thomas Dale (middle) raise money for 4Louis Credit: Shotton Colliery FC

A football team in County Durham, which was set up by a furloughed worker during lockdown, is match-ready and already supporting local charities.

Gareth Coxon was furloughed from a factory when lockdown began back in March. He wanted to use his time away from work to do something positive for the local community. The 28-year-old father decided to set up a new football club and it didn't take him long to kick it off.

The team has recently been able to start training sessions in line with guidance from both the government and the FA. Gareth says it's been good for him, the players and the wider community.

The team isn't just about football. They have also been working with charity Shotton Little Angels, which helps raise awareness of baby loss.

Recently, they have also helped support charity 4Louis by helping a little boy finish a 17 mile challenge.

Shotton Colliery FC helping Thomas finish his challenge Credit: Shotton Colliery FC

Six-year-old Thomas Dale from Shotton Colliery ran one mile every day for 17 days in memory of his older brother, who was stillborn.

The team helped him with his final mile and £2,523.45 was raised.

Gareth and the Shotton Colliery FC team hope to build the club's profile and continue to support charities within the local community.