As part of its increasing recognition as the FA’s charter community club of the year, Carshalton Athletic are set to welcome ex-Chelsea and England star Ray Wilkins MBE to Colston Avenue this Saturday.
The Robins scooped three FA charter titles at regional, county and national levels as, in just five years, the club has become the country’s leading community club with more than 2,000 members and 500 football players from all age groups and genders.
Wilkins, originally at Chelsea in the 1970s where he went on to captain the team at aged 18, also notably played for Manchester United, AC Milan and QPR while earning 84 caps for his country.
Wilkins will be at the ground before the Robins’ match against Bury Town on Saturday to check on the club’s progress and oversee some of the junior training sessions that will be taking place.
Surrey County FA CEO Ray Ward said: “Carshalton Athletic’s success in the FA Community Awards last year was a fantastic achievement and is a testament to the club’s work ethic and commitment to offering football for all.
“The Robins offer a superb model on how a football club should be run, not just in Surrey, but across the whole country.”
The club also hosts other community sports, such as martial arts and dancing, and aims to start a daily children’s nursery this summer.
Over the past 12 months, Carshalton Athletic have also helped deliver more than 200 local community events and raised money for the likes of the Royal Marsden hospital, Help for Heroes, The Liam Hearne Tribute Fund, Bliss, The NSPCC, Sports Relief and the Lennox Children Cancer Charity.
Club owner Paul Dipre said: “Not everyone agrees with the way we run our club but our values are of equality, community and kindness foremost.
"I would like to thank all of those who have supported our ambitions; there are many volunteers and staff who will also be very proud.”