Midshire Sponsors Powerchair Football Team | Midshire
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Midshire Sponsors Powerchair Football Team

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After just four months East Staffordshire Powerchair Football Team will finally join the regional league, thanks to sponsorship from national business systems company Midshire.

The team, made up of footballers with a range of disabilities who play using modified electric wheelchairs, has been unable to play at league level due to a lack of funding for kit.

The players will now enter the East Midlands Regional league in style in June with a competitive team set to burst onto the powerchair scene.

The club trains every week at the Futsal indoor facility at the FA National Football Centre, a facility provided by St George’s Park as part of its commitment to supporting community football.  After quickly attracting sponsorship and support from local businesses, the team now boasts 17 keen teenage players, with a further eight on the waiting list, and has the use of 12 power chairs.

Warren Kelsall, team manager, whose son Dylan plays in the team, said: “We are really grateful to Midshire for its support – having this one critical element in place means we are in a positive position to take our team on the road to playing at regional and national level.”

Noel Haines, regional manager for Midshire said: We were impressed with the commitment and spirit of the East Staffordshire team, and its supporters. Midshire has a long tradition of supporting sports in the community, so this is a great addition to our sponsorship activities and one which we hope will see the players go from strength to strength as they storm the league!

Midshire is a national business systems company specialising in print and copier hardware, maintenance and service, telephony, IT and marketing support across business and public sector organisations with a focus on finding savings and efficiencies for its customers.  Current sponsorships include a series of national teams active in netball and basketball.

Powerchair football is the only ‘active’ participation game available to electric wheelchair users.   Powered wheelchair football has been played in several countries around the world for many years but has only recently been introduced to the UK.  It is open to any player that can operate an electric wheelchair – which opens the sport to players with a range of disabilities, from Cerebral Palsy to Muscular Dystrophy.

Powerchair football has grown massively in the UK, with more than 40 dedicated clubs competing in regional and national leagues.  Midshire’s funding means that aspiring players within Staffordshire and its surrounding areas can access the sport at a level that is right for them, from recreational sport to setting up a club to enter the national league.

The club still has places for new players and is continually looking for keen volunteers and sponsors to help.

Equipment is provided at the sessions, including powerchairs which are fitted with the bumpers used to manoevre the oversized Powerchair football.