BEDALE AFC have successfully been accredited with The FA Charter Standard which makes sure that their people and policies are up to the standard to make them the best possible place to play and enjoy football and to ensure football is safe, fun and inclusive for all players.

Club chairman Martyn Coombs said: “We are proud to have once again, reached the required standard to achieve this prestigious award and is a reflection of all the hard work carried out by our small army of volunteers.”

Plans are well advanced for a celebrity football game, sanctioned by NRCFA Ltd, at the Heck Stadium at Bedale Sports Club on Sunday, April 5 to raise money for Prostate Cancer in memory of Steve Garbett, the Halcyon Trust for Steve Walsh and to assist local man Phil Thompson, who is currently undergoing cancer treatment.

Bedale AFC sponsors, Heck Food Ltd are matching the money raised on the day, £1 for £1.

Clive Pointon, an advocate for prostate cancer and a survivor of the disease, said: ‘‘I was one of the fortunate ones who got an early diagnosis and I am now all clear. I owe my life to early diagnosis and the wonderful consultants, doctors, nurses and ancillary staff at the James Cook Hospital.

“It is vital that men get their prostate checked regularly because early diagnosis is essential if you want to stand a chance of beating this cruel disease.”

Across the UK, prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men which claims the life of one man every 45 minutes. Team Garby, established to raise funds in memory of Steve Garbett, has already raised £178,593.96, 71 per cent of the £250,000 target.

Local electrician Steve Walsh was rushed to hospital in 2013 following a stroke that left him with locked-in syndrome. The Halcyon Trust was established to raise funds for the treatment and physiotherapy he is going to need for the rest of his life.

The family can only hope that one day he will be able to breathe without the ventilator and that he will regain movement and speech.

Ex RAF serviceman, Phil Thompson, a past player of Bedale AFC, where his son Harvey played last season, has been a great fundraiser for prostate cancer and did the Tan Hill ride for Steve Walsh a couple of months ago.

Phil has recently been hit by illness and is receiving tremendous support from MacMillan Cancer Support, for whom he wants to do a big fund-raiser when he is better.

A steering committee has been set up to plan and organise what is hoped will be a massive community event in the town. Simon Grayson is once again bringing his All-Star team of celebrities to play a game against a Bedale Legends team.

The programme will commence at 11am with a Bedale Juniors 9v9 challenge football game and at 12noon, Bedale AFC wearing the infamous hot dog Heck kit will play the Bedale AFC Reserves wearing the original sausages kit. The main game will kick off at 1pm with Simon Grayson’s Celebrity XI wearing the Sir Bobby Robson kit and Steve Anderson’s Bedale Legends wearing the Bangers and Mash kit.

Throughout the day it is planned to have a wide range of entertainment for all the family which might include a 3k family fun run. Further details in due course.

Simon Grayson’s team of celebrities

Simon Grayson played for Leeds, Leicester, Aston Villa (£1.25m), Blackburn (£1m), Sheff Wed, Stockport, Notts County, Bradford and Blackpool and has managed Leeds, Bradford, Huddersfield, Blackpool, PNE, Sunderland and Blackpool.

Darlington and Stockton Times:

Colson Smith is currently working on Coronation Street playing Craig. When not at work Colson follows Leeds United and plays cricket for Castleford.

Danny Maguire is a former rugby league player for Leeds Rhinos and Hull KR as scrum-half or stand-off. He also represented GB and England.

Steve Harmison is a former first-class fast bowler for England, playing in 63 Tests, 58 ODIs, and two T20s. He also played for Durham and Yorkshire.

Darlington and Stockton Times:

Ryan Sidebottom played cricket for Yorkshire and Notts, retiring in 2017 after taking more than 1,000 career wickets, five county championships and the 2010 ICC World Twenty20.

Darlington and Stockton Times:

Matt Bowman is the energetic and charismatic frontman of Leeds’s rockers the Pigeon Detectives. He once fell off the stage and cracked his head but just jumped up carried.

Ryan Wilson is a guitarist with the platinum selling rock band, the Pigeon Detectives from Leeds. Ryan also co-hosts a Leeds United podcast with Darren Harper called LS11.

Andrew John Hughes played more than 100 games as a midfielder and fullback for each of Notts County, Reading and Leeds United.

Richard Naylor is now retired from professional football and was the U18s boss of Leeds where he was caretaker assistant manager after the sacking of Neil Warnock.

Glynn Snodin played for Doncaster Rovers and later made 100 appearances for Leeds United Since retiring Snodin has held various scouting and coaching roles.

Bryn Law is a Welsh football commentator who speaks fluent Welsh (doesn’t he, didn’t he?) and has commentated for Sky Sports for 25 years. He is completely impartial and works for Leeds United’s Leeds Unitec TV.

Simon Rix is the bassist for the Leeds based, Kaiser Chiefs. Their UK hit singles include 2004 and 2005 number 9 hit “I Predict a Riot” and in 2007, their UK number 1 hit “Ruby”, which has sold over 461,000 copies.

Chris Edwards is a guitarist with Kasabian (from Leicester not Leeds BTW) an English rock band formed in 1997. I am sure Simon will utilise Chris’ height up front in his team.

Jamie Keeble-sales director of Heck Food Ltd.

Josh Warrington has held the IBF featherweight title since May 2018 and has held the British, Commonwealth, European and WBC International featherweight titles between 2013 and 2017. He made history in 2018 with his win over Lee Selby, making him the first male boxer from Leeds to win a world title.


Bedale AFC’s next fixture is at home to Yarm & Eaglescliffe on Saturday, kick off 2pm in the Premier Division of the North Riding Football League

Bedale AFC Reserves’ next fixture is away to Ripon City Reserves on Saturday, kick off 2pm in the quarter final of the Sunley League Challenge Cup of the Heck Harrogate & District Football League.