Thursday, March 24 marked the inaugural Leyton Orient Trust Walking Football Tournament following a flourishing season for the initiative.
Held at the SCORE Centre in Leyton, the tournament saw players and teams of all ages (50+) from across East London take part. The tournament was deemed a huge success by everyone involved.
“The day was brilliant, had lots of fun and great to see so many people taking part, I can’t wait for the next one!” said Paul, one of the walking footballers.
‘This is our very first tournament and it’s great to see so many people getting involved and proving age is no barrier when it comes to physical activity. The games were played in excellent spirit and there was a real buzz throughout!’ said Phillip Smith, Health and Wellbeing Activator
Taking the crown on the day were ‘Orient Old Boys’ who ended the tournament unbeaten with a sturdy defensive display. They will now go on to represent Orient in the Football League Trust regional tournament in May.
Players also had a surprise visit from former O, Peter Kitchen who had hoped to also participate but had to miss out through injury. Peter who is the ambassador for the O’s walking football was on hand to congratulate everyone who took part and handed out the trophy to the winning team.
“It was a real pleasure to present the trophies in the first LOFC Trust, Walking football tournament and to see so many players turning up. When we first launched the Walking Football initiative last September, there were only a handful of participants, but the numbers have increased significantly in recent months and it is now a huge success, thanks to the hard work and dedication of Phill Smith, Howard and Junior at the LOFC trust.
"It was so good to see older footballers still able to participate in the game they love, but there were also lots of older participants who have hardly ever played the game before, so it is also a social occasion as well as a way to still keep active no matter how fit you may have been in the past "
“A huge congratulations to Orient Old Boys on their win and an even bigger thank you to everyone who contributed to make this programme such a success! We look forward to continuing the programme and welcoming even more participants as the programme continues to grow over the coming months.”
If you’re looking to get active and are over 50 then walking football could be the activity for you, we now run sessions at four venues across East London for all abilities including new sessions in Tower Hamlets and Hackney launching this summer. Find out when and where all of our sessions take place by clicking HERE or by contacting Phillip Smith – firstname.lastname@example.org or 020 8556 5973.