top of page
Our Story so far....
Founded in 2014 Porters Soccability is an FA-affiliated disability football club based in Thundersley. Prior to this our team of volunteers had been active in Soccability football as a part of other clubs gaining a wealth of experience since 2007. The creation of Porters was in recognition that our club needed to extend beyond ‘just Football’ to create a welcoming atmosphere where people of similar needs can join for social and support reasons also. We draw players from across South East Essex. It takes its name from one of its former members, Jordan Porter, who sadly died in his teens.
The club’s strip of claret and light blue was originally designed to remember Jordan’s beloved club, West Ham United, however the colours evolved following the devastating loss of Charles Culwick in 2018, who was a long standing and respected member of our team helping Porters achieve what we are so proud to represent. Therefore, the addition of Southend United colours, blue, were included to show another step of our success in offering sport and social activities to those who depend on it most. With this we continue to remember what a difference people like Jordan and Charles made to our club & others. The kit colours of red & blue then became our sign of solidarity.
The club has a huge growing number of members – youth and adult - with a wide range of special educational needs. It attracts a range of young people, many of whom have attended local special schools. Porters is committed to providing the best environment for players of all genders and levels of ability. Porters enters a range of teams in the Essex Soccability League tournaments and has had many successes in these competitions.
The football is highly competitive to those who thrive from this but also offers a fun element where results do not matter, but importantly the club also provides the social setting in which these young adults acquire a range of skills so vital for their adult life and particularly their employment chances. So many of the players have found renewed confidence through the friendly, positive, and sensitive atmosphere created by the club’s organisers and supportive parents and carers. For some young people the experience has been life-changing in terms of their growth in maturity, attitude and outlook.
All those involved in the club are actively committed to realising its motto of ‘More Than A Football Club’. In order to realise its vision Porters has connections to a regular mid-week youth club in addition to its footballing activities and continue to search of events and experiences for our members to partake and enjoy. From Wrestling events, bowling and football club visits to name a few.
The club is headed by Nigel Stuart & Mick Hood, who, alongside a team of DBS checked & FA qualified coaches and committee members, steers the club forward. All those involved in running the club are committed to creating a safe and welcoming environment for players their parents/carers and supporters. We take pride that we can offer a safe environment where the members feel at ease and can relax in confidence.
In August 2017 the club sent a squad of twelve players to the Special Olympics National Games held in Sheffield. In February 2018 two of its players, Reece Johnson and Jack Wells were selected to represent the Great Britain football team at the Special Olympics 2019 World Summer Games to be held in Abu Dhabi. In February 2018 Club Chairperson, Nigel Stuart, was delighted to receive this news. “This represents further success for the club. Last year we had a strong representation at the Special Olympics in Sheffield. We sent an even stronger squad of 20 players to the Stirling Anniversary Games for the Special Olympics this coming Summer, and the participation of Reece and Jack at the World Summer Games 2019 is a great achievement for the two lads as well as a source of pride to all those involved in our club.” We wish to congratulate Jack and Reece and all the other GB athletes who attended these games who won GOLD in a competitive final with Australia.
In 2015 & 2017 Porters was awarded ‘Club of the Year’ at the Rochford and Castle Point Sports Awards Ceremony. Following the previous success of the club, our large team of volunteers continued to push Porters to new heights growing in members month by month. We continue to recognise the requirements of its members and ways we can support their additional needs. Our door is open to anyone who has special needs and we want to ensure that new members will feel welcome in a friendly, unjudgmental and safe environment.
We since continued to support the Special Olympics over the years attending all their events with thanks to some great sponsors Hasbro, Jingle Jam & Fullers. They continued to give our members the fantastic opportunity of representing their local region & the chance to achieve their dreams, representing country in the next world games. Its with huge thanks to the volunteers who give up their time to ensure we can raise the funds and be available to give the members these opportunities.
Without this people & the generosity of our fundraisers & sponsors, it simply would not be possible.
As Covid was a tough time for all, We continued to recognise that mental wellbeing would be paramount and again the members joined together to remain positive and our families supported each other to explore every avenue to support those most vulnerable and in need of support. But this did not deter us from the focus of Team GB’s attendance in the World Games in Berlin 2023.
We are very proud to say that 5 Porters members were selected in the Unified Football category, for these games. A proud achievement for some players who have used Soccability football to take this step. Some players who have been members for up to 15 years, we take pride in the things these athletes have overcome and proved that commitment and hard work eventually does pay off.
These players are true role models to our younger generation of athletes. We are extremely proud of them.
bottom of page