Stevenage FC open day hailed as huge success with community event attended by hundreds of loyal fans at Bragbury End

PUBLISHED: 21:44 28 July 2018 | UPDATED: 21:53 28 July 2018

Luke Wilkinson and Ben Kennedy play football with young fans at the Stevenage FC Open Day 2018. Picture: DANNY LOO

Luke Wilkinson and Ben Kennedy play football with young fans at the Stevenage FC Open Day 2018. Picture: DANNY LOO

©2018 Danny Loo Photography - all rights reserved

There have been smiles all round after hundreds of Stevenage fans of all ages attended a hugely succesful open day at the club’s training HQ, Bragbury End.

Scott Cuthbert signs autographs for young fans at the Stevenage FC Open Day 2018. Picture: DANNY LOOScott Cuthbert signs autographs for young fans at the Stevenage FC Open Day 2018. Picture: DANNY LOO

It was fun in the sun as League Two side threw open its doors at the impressive facility for loyal supporters young and old on Saturday.

Boss Dino Maamria and his squad welcomed the community to its base, as a large number of people watched the side prepare for the beginning of the new season when the Lamex hosts Tranmere a week on Saturday.

Danny Newton and Ronnie Henry enjoying themselves at the Stevenage FC Open Day 2018. Picture: DANNY LOODanny Newton and Ronnie Henry enjoying themselves at the Stevenage FC Open Day 2018. Picture: DANNY LOO

Supporters had been encouraged to come along and gain an inside view on the hard work Maamria and his men have been doing all summer.

There was a family-friendly atmosphere as Maamria’s men including talented keeper Paul Farman took part in impromptu games of football with fans, while other members of the squad including Ronnie Henry, Alex Revell and Scott Cuthbert staged penalty-shootouts.

Ronnie Henry offers himself for target practice at the Stevenage FC Open Day 2018. Picture: DANNY LOORonnie Henry offers himself for target practice at the Stevenage FC Open Day 2018. Picture: DANNY LOO

The normally fearsome centre-back Cuthbert showed his softer side by delighting of hundreds of children, happily giving more than three hours of his time to play football with wide-eyed youngsters – only hours after playing in a hard-fought friendly match against Premier League Watford on Friday night.

Speaking to CometSport the family man said: “Events like this are great. It’s so important to reach out into our community.

Paul Field with his twin daughters (L-R) Roisin and Colleen, four, at the Stevenage FC Open Day 2018. Picture: DANNY LOOPaul Field with his twin daughters (L-R) Roisin and Colleen, four, at the Stevenage FC Open Day 2018. Picture: DANNY LOO

“It’s a pleasure to be able to give something back. I’ve only been here a few weeks but you can tell Stevenage is a club which is in the community.”

Once the team finished training, the entire squad gladly mingled with fans as they signed autographs and stopped for chats with loyal supporters.

Ben Kennedy saves a penalty from a fan at the Stevenage FC Open Day 2018. Picture: DANNY LOOBen Kennedy saves a penalty from a fan at the Stevenage FC Open Day 2018. Picture: DANNY LOO

Boro Bear was on hand to add to the jovial atmosphere, while the club’s dynamic new CEO Alex Tunbridge was in attendance to discuss all things Stevenage with many.

The highly-regarded Tunbridge – who was headhunted by chairman Phil Wallace to reinvigorate off the field matters – was delighted with the event.

Stevenage FC manager Dino Maamria with his children at the Stevenage FC Open Day 2018. Picture: DANNY LOOStevenage FC manager Dino Maamria with his children at the Stevenage FC Open Day 2018. Picture: DANNY LOO

He said: “I’d like to say a big thank you to each and every supporter who took the trouble to come to Bragbury End today.

“For a club like Stevenage it’s vitally important to reach out to our community with events such as this.

Stevenage FC announcer and all-round good guy Jay Drackford at the fans' event at Bragbury End. CREDIT @laythy29Stevenage FC announcer and all-round good guy Jay Drackford at the fans' event at Bragbury End. CREDIT @laythy29

“It certainly looks like everyone has enjoyed themselves today.”

Good-natured boss Maamria took part in a fans’ Q&A hosted by Jay Drackford while his squad looked on in the sun.

Stevenage boss Dino Maamria takes part in a Q&A with fans at Bragbury End. CREDIT @laythy29Stevenage boss Dino Maamria takes part in a Q&A with fans at Bragbury End. CREDIT @laythy29

Maamria added; “I’ve done lots of these events during my career but this is the best one yet.”

Food and drink was provided by Osinsky’s while the Stevenage FC Foundation team were also on hand to entertain youngsters.

Sports journalist Layth Yousif with photographer Danny Loo at Bragbury EndSports journalist Layth Yousif with photographer Danny Loo at Bragbury End

As the light-hearted event drew to a close, a Stevenage player donned Boro Bear’s large head and ran around, prompting smiles from all those assembled.

Unfortunately for the footballer in question he tripped and fell, with much hillarity ensuing.

A young fan proudly shows off the autogrpahs he collected from the Stevenage FC squad at Bragbury End. CREDIT @laythy29A young fan proudly shows off the autogrpahs he collected from the Stevenage FC squad at Bragbury End. CREDIT @laythy29

Alas there was no video evidence of the spectacular slip and Michael Timlin was unavailable for comment.

For details on how to get your ticket for Stevenage v Tranmere visit the club’s official website.

Alex Revell and Harry Potter, aka Stevenage comms man Dan Branowski share a joke. CREDIT @laythy29Alex Revell and Harry Potter, aka Stevenage comms man Dan Branowski share a joke. CREDIT @laythy29

See this week’s CometSport 16-page supplement for our exclusive interviews with Maamria, Tunbridge, Henry, Cuthbert, Revell, Farman, Timlin, James Ball and others.

Follow Stevenage FC reporter Layth on Twitter @laythy29 and @comet_layth.

More news stories

Yesterday, 13:26

A 30-year-old man from Stevenage has been jailed for six years today after two “horrific attacks” on men outside pubs, which left them both with life-changing injuries.

Yesterday, 22:52

Did you see a fight outside a Stevenage bar early this morning?

Yesterday, 09:22

EXCLUSIVE: Premier League star and humble hometown Hitchin lad Jack Wilshere is backing Mark Burke’s Canaries to soar in their bid to reach the FA Cup first round – as news emerges that the BBC and BT Sport are planning to broadcast Monday’s draw from Top Field if the Canaries win on Saturday.

Yesterday, 17:14

Eight employees who lost their jobs following the takeover of a Stevenage coach firm have been awarded a total of more than £40,000.

Most read stories

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

Image
Read the The Comet e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

The Comet weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy