County chief pleased with progress

The FA has agreed changes to mixed football age groups for 2013/14 (Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO)

The FA has agreed changes to mixed football age groups for 2013/14 (Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO) - Credit: Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO

Latest news from the Essex FA

Essex FA chief executive Phil Sammons claimed local football is “in a much better place than many would perceive” during his annual address.

Sammons was speaking at the association’s latest annual report, which marks the start of the yearly club and league affiliation process for 2013/14.

The Former Grays Athletic and Hornchurch player, who heads up a 22-strong team at the county office, also pointed towards a ‘report full of very positive figures, achievements and developments’ as staff prepare to process affiliations over the summer.

With the introduction of personal accident insurance for grassroots players coming up, as well as facets of the Youth Development Review, Sammons has reflected with optimism for the future.

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“This report is full of very positive figures, achievements and developments which show football in a much better place than many would perceive,” he said.

“I guess, like everything in life, you have to draw your conclusions from your own personal experiences. The game continually evolves and, to this end, I highlight three key developments which have taken place during the past year.

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“The first is the new formats of youth football which will see 5, 7, 9 and 11-a-side football being played and the non-competitive aspect being extended from under-7s and under-8s through to under-9s for season 2013/14.

“It will be through to under-11s by 2015/16. This will bring initial challenges in terms of facilities, interpretation of ‘non-competitive’ and the general acceptance of this developing the skill levels of our young players.

“The second is our involvement in the repeated substitutions pilot for adult football. This allows for five substitutes to be named, all of whom may be used, and a substituted player can return to the field of a play as a substitute.

“The third is the acceptance of 3G pitches for competition matches. Due to the terrible weather at the back end of the year they became the only pitches fit for play, and clubs were happy to play on them. Perhaps the future is 3G?”

The club and league affiliation process in Essex takes place between May and July each year, and existing member clubs have until Monday July 1 to ensure their forms are returned in time for the 2013/14 season.

This is also the deadline for entries into one of the various County Cups, and to avoid a late affiliation fee.

New clubs will receive their packs by the end of May, but prospective new clubs are still invited to contact the county office to register their details.

Three or four alternative names should be prepared in advance in case the first choice is not available. There is no deadline for new clubs to affiliate, though each league sets their own final date for membership approaches.

For 2013/14, clubs need to have ‘Personal Accident’ and ‘Legal (Public) Liability’ insurance before their affiliation can be completed.

The Essex FA have pledged to cover the costs of each club’s Public Liability Cover at Step Seven of the National League System and below, worth £18 per club, as well as agreeing to pay £15 toward Bluefin Personal Accident cover on behalf of all of the member clubs who require it.

Existing clubs had their re-affiliation forms posted to them this week, including an admission slip for the Annual General Meeting at the Essex Record Office in Chelmsford on Thursday June 6 (7.30pm) for the transaction of the ordinary and special business of the company. Attendance at this meeting is not compulsory for members.

Details on club and league affiliations, starting a new club and insurance can be found at under ‘Clubs/Affiliation’. This is also the place to find digital copy of the Annual Report.

If you have any questions, contact the Governance Team on 01245 393080 or email

Details are also shared on Twitter (@EssexCountyFA) and Facebook (EssexFootball).

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