RECOVERING drug-users and alcoholics played a game football to celebrate their achievement in getting off narcotics.

A total of 14 teams from across the Tees Valley and beyond took part in the football tournament at Thornaby Pavilion.

Organiser Brian Hindmarch, a residential rehabilitation case manager based on Teesside, said about 80 per cent of the players were completely off drugs.

“We didn’t want to exclude the other 20 per cent who are on the road to recovery but we did say they had to be off everything during the day," he said.

"So, at least from about 9.30am to 4.30pm, we know they were doing well for themselves, their families and society.

“It was a way to create a sense of self-worth but also football is just a great way for people to get together. With friends and family there were about 120 people there. We were expecting more teams, but there was another big tournament in Sheffield which was just as well, because I don’t know how we would have coped. It was a really great day.”

The tournament was won by Bridge House hostel in Stockton who beat the North East Athletic Middlesbrough, a sports club for recovering addicts.