Future looks bright as Ottery Football Club install new 20k floodlights

PUBLISHED: 17:30 05 August 2018

Mike Ringer, Chairman of Ottery FC (centre) with installers Ashley Connett (AD Connett Electrical), Jamie Connett (JPC Tree Care), Sam Bader (S Bader Electrical) and club Trustee Monty Perry. Ref sho 31 18TI 9121. Picture: Terry Ife

Mike Ringer, Chairman of Ottery FC (centre) with installers Ashley Connett (AD Connett Electrical), Jamie Connett (JPC Tree Care), Sam Bader (S Bader Electrical) and club Trustee Monty Perry. Ref sho 31 18TI 9121. Picture: Terry Ife

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A £20,000 upgrade to replace aging floodlights at Washbrook Meadows will help football in Ottery to shine for years to come, says the club chairman.

Mike Ringer, Chairman of Ottery FC (centre) with installers Ashley Connett (AD Connett Electrical), Jamie Connett (JPC Tree Care), Sam Bader (S Bader Electrical) and club Trustee Monty Perry. Ref sho 31 18TI 9121. Picture: Terry IfeMike Ringer, Chairman of Ottery FC (centre) with installers Ashley Connett (AD Connett Electrical), Jamie Connett (JPC Tree Care), Sam Bader (S Bader Electrical) and club Trustee Monty Perry. Ref sho 31 18TI 9121. Picture: Terry Ife

Ottery Football Club undertook an ‘impossible task’ last summer in a £20,000 appeal to replace the lights after 31 years.

The footballing and local community rallied to their aid, donating match fees and attending fundraisers.

Last autumn, a generous benefactor donated the remaining £17,500 needed to complete the project.

The club purchased the equipment in autumn but was forced to wait until July to install the lights after one of the ‘worst winters’ postponed the work.

Mike Ringer, Chairman of Ottery FC (centre) with installers Ashley Connett (AD Connett Electrical), Jamie Connett (JPC Tree Care), Sam Bader (S Bader Electrical) and club Trustee Monty Perry. Ref sho 31 18TI 9116. Picture: Terry IfeMike Ringer, Chairman of Ottery FC (centre) with installers Ashley Connett (AD Connett Electrical), Jamie Connett (JPC Tree Care), Sam Bader (S Bader Electrical) and club Trustee Monty Perry. Ref sho 31 18TI 9116. Picture: Terry Ife

Workman spent a week installing the new fixtures, which will help the club to train in winter, play evening games and continue hosting cup finals.

Club chairman Mike Ringer said: “Over a year ago, we started raising money to upgrade the flood lights; when we found out the cost we thought this would be a impossible task.

“With visiting teams donating their match fees, to collections on the bar, to our supporters being ever so generous, the vision was getting closer but a huge investment would be needed.

“We have inherited a facility that needs a lot of work and it’s good fortune that we have so many who are willing to help to achieve the vision we have and keep this place going and getting to the place where we can offer even more for the local community.”

Mr Ringer thanked the director and owner of Thrifty, Sam Bader of Bader Electrical, Ash Connett of ADC Electrical, Jamie Connett of JPC Tree Care and CEF Honiton.

The improved facility could stand the club in good stead in future as it pursues moving up into higher divisions.

Mr Ringer said: “The hard work is off the pitch. They look at your ground and your results when it comes to the higher divisions.

We have the facilities and we have to build on it to get it up to spec. My job as chairman is to give the team a facility to play on.”

The club has moved on to its next project to refurbish its changing room showers at a cost of nearly £3,500.

The local FA has granted £2,000 to the project and more fundraisers will be held in the coming months. The club has also secured funding to install a defibrillator on site.

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