A community football club has been awarded the SFA Gold Quality Mark.

Bathgate Thistle Community Football Club were delighted to finish off a hugely successful 2019 by achieving the sought-after award.

The gold award recognises the huge efforts the club has made over the past 12 months with community participation, coach education, club services and an internal support framework.

Achieving the gold allows them to jump two tiers from their current bronze ranking and is the second-highest award available under the scheme.

 

Club vice-chairman Paul Marr said: “Individuals such as our treasurer Fabio Calierno, secretary Geoff Thomson, child protection officer Lorna Nichol and chairman Peter Graham make this club what it is today.

“We all put in countless hours behind the scenes to ensure our club is the best it can be and continues to provide the best possible environment for our 500-plus players, coaches and team officials.”

Paul, who was recently shortlisted as a finalist for a local service to sport award, added: “2019 has been an incredibly busy yet hugely rewarding year for both me and the club.

 

“We set out this year with some clear objectives to drive the club forward with the aim of making it better, stronger and more united.

“This has without doubt led to a huge amount of work and some difficult decisions along the way.

“However, to finish the year off with a personal nomination for a West Lothian Council Active Schools and community sport award and to receive our gold Quality Mark award has been truly incredible.

“We have some excellent plans in place for 2020, including the relaunch of our boys and girls soccer centres, and are excited to see what else the new year brings.”

Bathgate Thistle CFC were created in 2013 and today have 26 teams at all age brackets with over 500 players and 100 volunteers.

Anyone who wants to get involved with the club can contact [email protected]