Today, I met with Wigan’s new Community Innovation Manager, Anthony Atherton at Wigan’s Central Park offices. It was my first-time meeting Anthony and also my first time at Central Park on Montrose Avenue.
Whilst I was blown away by Anthony’s passion and enthusiasm for his new job, of which I think he is going to help bring the fans and club closer together in 2018 – it’s the incredible work done by Real Junk Food at Central Park that will be my ever-lasting memory.
I was aware that Wigan, as a club do some fantastic things in the community, look at their recent N Power campaign in which they visited local places like a church and the MS Centre, to repaint them – I didn’t realise the ongoing commitment at Central Park and its incredible impact on the local community.
For those, (who like me), weren’t aware of the day to day commitment that is provided at Central Park – let me try to explain:
Central Park, Wigan’s office space hosts educational programmes and a café area called Fur Clemt, which is Wiganese for very hungry! Fur Clemt is operated by the Real Junk Food Project in which they utilise food that would otherwise go to landfill. Fur Clemt, offers a supermarket and café feel for those who need food and offers a sort of supermarket, an independent take on a food bank – without the stigma attached. Whilst I was with Anthony, he explained that supermarkets sometimes have to throw away perfectly good bananas, simply due to the colour of them but now, thanks to the Real Junk Food project, they can go to good use – in exchange for a small, suggested donation. Fur Clemt also runs a café type service where people can go for breakfast and dinner, again for a small, suggested donation.
There are dates for afternoon tea, bistro nights and more. Fur Clemt is very much a place for the whole community and a place in which I urge every Wigan fan to support in whatever way that might be.
Another great initiative that is advertised on the Fur Clemt website (http://www.realjunkfoodprojectwigan.org.uk/ ) is a Rugby Memories afternoon with former Wigan Player, Billy Melling. Every second Tuesday, Billy will be at Fur Clemt to watch a classic Wigan game with anyone who wishes to attend with snacks and drinks served on a donation basis. A great treat for Wigan fans old and young. Full details of the dates in which Billy Melling will be at Fur Clemt and details on other events can be found at http://www.realjunkfoodprojectwigan.org.uk
To my ignorance, this has been happening with the support of our fantastic club. A venture that I have perhaps ignorantly chosen to ignore or one that just sits amongst one of the many great things the rugby club do for the community. I can tell you, that leaving Central Park after witnessing the work carried out by the guys at Fur Clemt and the Real Junk Food Project, is one of the proudest feelings I have had being a Wigan Fan – and we are World Club Champions!
Pay a visit to Fur Clemt and you will get the same proud feeling I got when leaving Central Park.Embed from Getty Images