BURTON Albion’s home match against Bolton Wanderers tomorrow, Tuesday March 10, will see the club using the fixture to support the Level Playing Field charity, who campaign to provide access to live sport for everyone and remove potential barriers for disabled supporters.
Coinciding with the EFL’s Day of Action, Level Playing Field believes that disability is a social issue, and an individual becomes disabled when they face social, attitudinal and environmental barriers; this is known as the social model of disability.
The charity aims to remove these barriers by allowing all fans to enjoy live sporting events equally, with inclusive and accessible viewing and inclusive customer service for disabled supporters.
Burton Albion FC and Burton Albion Community Trust are dedicated in their work to ensure that disabled supporters are treated equally within our fanbase.
Disabled supporters are welcomed at the Pirelli Stadium and have access to multiple, dedicated wheelchair bays, in front of the Carling Stand and Don Amott Stand, as well as step-free access in both the stands and in hospitality. Away supporters who require access to the wheelchair bays can find them in front of the Russell Roof Tiles Stand.
Burton Albion also operates a sensory room for fans with Autism, providing them with a safe but interactive environment in the build-up to a match, but also to watch the game from too.
Burton Albion Community Trust runs a number of inclusion projects for both young fans and adults. These include social clubs, such as the Holiday Inn Express Junior Disability Youth Club, and the Adult Disability Social Club. Both clubs are held at Burton Albion Community Hub on Casey Lane (DE14 2ER), with the Youth Club session open on Mondays between 6pm-8pm and the Adult Club on Fridays between 10am-11.30am respectively.
The Trust offers a Pan-Disability football programme, split into three different sessions: Every Player Counts; Every Player Counts Juniors; and Able Too Albion. The sessions are for boys and girls with disabilities from the age of 5-years-old through to adults, giving them a chance to play football and engage with other participants who have a similar interest and passion to play football. The sessions are as follows:
Every Player Counts (EPC) 16+
When & Where: Wednesday (6.30pm-7.30pm) – Anglesey 3G (Clarence Street – DE14 3LG)
Every Player Counts (EPC) Juniors 5-11
When & Where: Thursday (5pm-6pm) – Anglesey 3G (Clarence Street – DE14 3LG)
Able Too Albion 11-16
When & Where: Thursday (6pm-7pm) – Fountains High School (Bitham Lane – DE13 0HB)
BACT also offers a Powerchair Football session at Shobnall Leisure Centre (DE14 2BB) on Tuesdays between 6pm-8.30pm. A unique sport that allows people with a high-level of impairment to participate in football, it is the only active team participation sport for people who use electric wheelchairs. Open to all ages, genders and disabilities, it is fast-paced, dynamic and very enjoyable to watch!
Head of Community Matt Hancock said: “At Burton Albion and BACT, we support the work of Level Playing Field and we also ensure that we are inclusive towards supporters with disabilities in Burton Upon Trent.
“Disabled supporters have access to facilities and programmes run by both the football club and the Trust, such as a sensory room on match days and our weekly inclusive programmes, such as Able Too Albion and Disability Social Clubs.
“Using football as a force for good against discrimination means we can continue to remove barriers that those living with disabilities face, both at sporting events and in day-to-day life.”