New Windsor club to form and take on Stag Meadow lease

Mark Cooper. Photo: Paul Smithson.
Mark Cooper. Photo: Paul Smithson.

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The following is a press release received by Football in Berkshire and printed verbatim. We’ll formally speak to Mark Cooper in due course.

Windsor Youth Football Club along with former Windsor & Eton player and Windsor FC manager Mark Cooper have agreed to form a new club in Windsor. Together, both parties have come to an agreement with The Crown Estate to take the lease for Stag Meadow for the beginning of the 2023/24 season.

The news has been welcomed by supporters of Windsor FC. Michael Gegg – spokesperson for the Windsor FC Supporters Club – stated that he believes that the fans will welcome the ownership structure: “This is the only viable and, importantly, realistic plan for football in Windsor. It’s community focused, it’s ambitious, but in a way that is measured, achievable and can be sustainable for many years to come. Vitally, the partnership between Mark and Windsor Youth ensures that the club will be run by local people for the community.”

Mark Cooper said that the new ownership structure will enable the club to access funding to develop the facility.

Cooper said: “The ambition is to build a club and team that the town can be proud of, and get Windsor competing with the likes of Slough and Maidenhead again. But it’s more than just wanting to win football matches, the aim here is to develop a community club that embraces senior, youth, women’s, disabled and veterans’ football.”

The club plans to install an artificial playing surface so that youth and senior players alike can use the ground much more intensively.

Paul Mitchell, Chairman of Windsor Youth, said: “The Youth Club committee members are unanimously behind this, as we look to establish a main hub with one club working together for the benefit of the community.” Windsor Youth has 550 players, almost 50 teams and 120 coaches. Mitchell added: “The makeup of the club won’t change. However, we’ll have a new name and base, and the chance to develop much better facilities.”

Cllr. Malcolm Leach, Mayor and Eton Town Councillor, said: “We have always supported Windsor Youth FC and wish the new local Windsor consortium every success, and look forward to future involvement with the club.”

Related: The new Windsor club and the questions we’re all asking

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