A Wiltshire based football team, Trowbridge Tigers, has helped form a new local football league, The South West League.
Teams from Devon, Wiltshire, Bristol & South Wales ,who are all associated with the Gay Football Supporters Network, came together to form the league recently when the identified the need for competitive league football to compliment their current schedules in response to a change in GFSN league structures.
Trowbridge Tigers founder Tim Brown explained that where most clubs were predominantly gay, the Tigers are 80% straight. “Trowbridge is a smaller catchment area compared to the other teams and it really doesn’t have a gay scene like say Bristol.”
One of few gay players on the team, Nick Pitcher told the BBC “It’s a pioneering team – a straight team in the gay league – But the stick the straight guys must put up with – they’re much more likely to get ribbed at work for playing in a gay league then we are.”
Tim, who is straight, began playing himself in gay league football back in 2000 when a friend who was playing for the Bristol Panthers team invited him to join in order for him to be able to play more games.
The Trowbridge Tigers have joined forces with GFC Bournemouth & Hampshire, Exeter Lions, Cardiff Dragons, and Bristol Panthers to form the new league
The Gay Football Supporters Network (GFSN) League which is the UK’s leading competition has undergone many changes this season forcing the withdrawal of GFC Bournemouth & Hampshire and the non admission of Bristol Panthers.
The Tigers have recently returned from the Gay Games in Germany where they were able to achieve being the second highest placed UK team, and they were also invited to take part in both the opening and closing ceremonies.
In the 2010/11 season playing in Divison 2, the club can look forward to playing against teams including Birmingham Blaze, Leftfooters, Cardiff Dragons, Leicester Wildcats and the Brighton Bandits.
More information can be found at the South West League Website.