Step forward Dundee

 Focus group meeting in Dundee

Focus group meeting in Dundee

Walking football took another step forward last night, when the East Region of the Scottish FA hosted another pilot focus group meeting of walking footballers from across the area in their offices in Dundee.

The meeting was chaired by Tony Smith the Walking Football Scotland Trustee for the East and was supported by Kevin Lee the Scottish FA Regional manager and his team.

The delegates in attendance, representing teams and groups from across the region were joined by Walking Football Scotland Chairman Gary McLaughlin and a wide range of issues was covered.

WFS chairman Gary McLaughlin said:

“It was great to be at the meeting and to get first hand information of how walking football is growing in the East Region and to see people travelling from Perth, Scone and as far as Kirkcaldy was impressive. Everyone is passionate about walking football and that is a major factor to the development of the sport.”

 There was a healthy debate on a wide range of subjects and the issue of competition versus health benefits was a major feature. Competitive Leagues, Friendly Festivals, Age and mixed and women only sessions were some of the topics for discussion.

Walking football is still relatively new and is growing fast but lack of numbers still limit the speed of development in areas such as setting different age limits, but that is changing.

WFS Trustee Tony Smith said “I am fortunate that the Area reps in the East Region focus group share a common purpose, which is to try and promote walking football and all the benefits it brings to participants. Discussions are frank and open about concerns and feedback we get from our members. Following on from these discussions we aim to make any necessary compromises to help engage as many members as possible in organised competitive and non-competitive tournaments.

Ravenscraig League Fixtures for 26th September

Hearts 98 top the League with three sessions left to play and being pushed hard by two very good sides in joint second place, Gala Fairydean Rovers and Hearts 56.

Good luck to all taking part next week.

 Action from Ayr United Parkhouse V North Lanarkshire Leisure (red)

Action from Ayr United Parkhouse V North Lanarkshire Leisure (red)


Ravenscraig Walking Football Fixtures 26th September 2018 


Hearts 98 v Ayr United Parkhouse

Hearts 56 v Fife Wanderers

Gala Fairydean Rovers v Glasgow Sport East

North Lanarkshire Leisure v Stenhousemuir

Oriam v Glasgow Sport West

Ayr United Beresford v Motherwell


Hearts 98 v Glasgow Sport East

Hearts 56 v Motherwell

Gala Fairydean Rovers v Ayr United Parkhouse

Oriam v Fife Wanderers

Glasgow Sport West v North Lanarkshire Leisure

Ayr United Beresford v Stenhousemuir


Glasgow Sport East v Motherwell

North Lanarkshire Leisure v Ayr United Beresford

Hearts 56 v Ayr United Parkhouse

Glasgow Sport West v Fife Wanderers

Gala Fairydean Rovers v Oriam

Stenhousemuir v Hearts 98


Healthy Body, Healthy Mind

Signing up to Scotland’s Mental Health Charter

WFS Committment

Scotland’s Mental Health Charter for Physical Activity and Sport is the charity SAMH’s latest programme with groups covering various sports and activities from rollerblading to basketball, yoga to walking football - all signing up to create positive lasting change in people’s mental wellbeing

Walking Football Scotland feels this is a major part in what we aim to deliver and are proud to make a commitment and create an action plan and strategy, enabling us to meet the needs of the Charter working with SAMH.

Many of our players feel the benefit in engaging and re-engaging in sport,  walking football in particular is helping many connect and reconnect , making new friends, having something to aim for, the camaraderie, fitness and social activities all central to WFS and many of us share the positive stories in our groups and sessions across Scotland.

WFS Chairman Gary McLaughlin said: “Walking Football Scotland recognise the impact that physical activity and sport can have on our physical and mental health and our general wellbeing. Mental health and physical health should be of equal value, and we will raise awareness amongst our membership, partners and public to ensure equality is at the heart of what we do.”

Scotland’s Mental Health Charter for Physical Activity and Sport aims to improve equality and reduce discrimination for anyone with a mental health issue and to remove any and all barriers and allow participation for all.

It was with this in mind the WFS Board worked to achieve the requirements and were rewarded in June this year when the then Minister for Public Health and Sport Aileen Campbell was able to help us promote WFS commitment to signing up to the Charter.

 The photograph shows l-r chair Gary McLaughlin, Aileen Campbell MSP, Robert Nesbitt of SAMH and Treasurer David Hyland with the Charter Documentation in June this year.

The photograph shows l-r chair Gary McLaughlin, Aileen Campbell MSP, Robert Nesbitt of SAMH and Treasurer David Hyland with the Charter Documentation in June this year.

 Signing up

Another first for the organisation saw Walking Football Scotland in August this year being one of the first 50 groups in the country to sign up to Scotland’s Mental Health Charter.
WFS was delighted to join SAMH in a celebration of their work in physical activity, sport and mental health in Glasgow (Friday August 10th) and complete the signing of the charter.
Over the course of the morning WFS chairman Gary McLaughlin had an opportunity to breakfast with SAMH friends and fellow signatories to the SAMH Mental Health Charter from across sport, business and health and to take part in a question and answer session with SAMH Ambassadors, Sir Chris Hoy and Adam Peaty, hosted by sports broadcaster Jill Douglas.


Sir Chris Hoy and Adam Peaty have joined forces with SAMH (Scottish Association for Mental Health) and the Olympic stars are urging sports clubs across the country to encourage more people to get physically active to improve their mental wellbeing.

Sir Chris Hoy, SAMH ambassador, said: “Everyone should have the chance to get active and learn to use physical activity and sport to help live a happier, healthier life and we need to ensure funding is in place to deliver initiatives to support this.

“I myself have truly benefitted from the positive impact of physical activity and there should never be barriers to prevent anyone from getting active.

“SAMH is leading the way in Scotland ensuring sporting organisations and groups recognise the power of physical activity and encourage everyone to take part in their activities no matter who they are or what their personal struggle may be.”

 WFS join some of the 50 signatories to the Charter in Glasgow.

WFS join some of the 50 signatories to the Charter in Glasgow.

WFS has signed up to the Mental Health Charter because it shares and believes in the Charter’s principal and is committed to preventing any barriers that stops any of Walking Football Scotland’s participants, friends, players and communities, engaging, participating and achieving their goals. The organisation aims to increase awareness by creating a deeper knowledge and understanding of Mental Health and Wellbeing for all. Everyone should have a social responsibility and this is core to Walking Football Scotland.

 l-r Graeme Henderson Director of Delivery and Development SAMH, Ian Beattie vice Chair of SAMH look on as Walking Football Scotland Chair Gary McLaughlin signs up to the Mental Health Charter.

l-r Graeme Henderson Director of Delivery and Development SAMH, Ian Beattie vice Chair of SAMH look on as Walking Football Scotland Chair Gary McLaughlin signs up to the Mental Health Charter.

WFS intend to roll out the Charter and help our members understand more about mental health issues by using the advice from SAMH in e-learning and toolkit form and use the pathway for better understanding and support all participants of walking football.

Robert Nesbitt SAMH Head of Physical Activity and Sport said: “It was great that Walking Football Scotland could join us and looking forward to see you realise your Charter action plan and difference that it will make to breaking down the barriers to engaging, participating and achieving!”

Gretna Fundraiser for Prostate Cancer UK

Gretna FC 2008  are making strides to help stop prostate cancer being a killer by organising their own Friendly Football Festival as part of Prostate Cancer UK’s first Walking Football Month. The friendly walking football Festival will take place on Sunday 30th September at Raydale Park, Gretna. 

The Anvils have stepped up to join more than 45 other walking football clubs across the UK in signing up to host a friendly Festival this September, in a bid to fight back against the most common cancer in men.

Gretna Logo.jpg

Walking Football Month in Scotland has also been backed by former Scotland football manager Craig Brown CBE, Walking Football Scotland’s Ambassador.

Craig said: “Prostate Cancer UK's Walking Football Month, this month of September, will be featuring Gretna FC 2008 who will be hosting their own friendly Festival to raise awareness and funds for important research. In the UK, about 1 in 8 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer at some point in their lives.”

“With the Scotland Women's Team qualifying for the first time for the forthcoming FIFA World Cup in France. I am honoured to be the co-ambassador of Walking Football in Scotland.  My colleague is none other than, and arguably, Scotland's most famous female player, Rose Reilly.” 

Since Gary McLaughlin, Chairman of Walking Football Scotland, invited Rose and me to become involved, I have been hugely impressed by the rapid expansion of this popular sport and as a Member of the League Managers Association it is understandable that I'm fully supportive of both its involvement in raising awareness of Prostate Cancer and also of the impact which Walking Football will have, this month in particular. I am sure everyone will wish all the best to Stuart Rome and Gretna 2008 in their fantastic and generous efforts, and to support them in any way we can to raise money for research and rid ourselves of prostate cancer.

GFC 2008 Walking Football Festival Poster.jpg

Walking Football Scotland chairman Gary McLaughlin said: “We are delighted to be involved and working with Prostate Cancer UK. Our age group sadly is the group which is mainly affected by prostate cancer. Although only males have a prostate gland, families can be dramatically changed by this disease.  It is in the best interest of our male and female members to help, support and get involved. All credit to Stuart and Gretna 2008 for doing just that and to their commitment and generosity for a very worthwhile cause. ”

Get along to Raydale Park and raise some money for a worthwhile cause and have some fun.