The fans-owned and socially-minded football club AFC Wimbledon has generously donated two copies of its newly-published book We Are Home to Ian Strutt, local resident, in support of the Epsom Wells Community Association (EWCA).
Ian writes: Supporters of this now League One football club know all about being pushed out from their home as, almost 20 years ago, their club was transferred 70 miles away to Milton Keynes.
Our modern social centre was shut – without consultation – in 2015. Now, the fight back is well underway. The new association of EWCA is actively trying to buy or rent the Wells Social Centre to re-open it as a vibrant social meeting place.
Fans robbed of their football club were told by the Football Association (FA) that “it was not in the wider interests of football” for them to start their own football club. The rapid progress of the new club through the leagues into League One showed just how wrong the FA was.
The Dons Trust was formed in February 2002 by 1200 fans who packed into Wimbledon Theatre. The Trust has done an absolutely magnificent job in rebuilding the club and rehabilitating it into the football mainstream.
New stadium cost £30 million
Fans raised the lion’s share of the £30 million cost of building the club’s 9300-capacity stadium just opened in Plough Lane, Merton. The 336-page book We Are Home – The Complete History of the Dons and the Journey Back to Plough Lane tracks the early years of Wimbledon Football Club right up to the triumphant opening of the spectacular new stadium.
Quite a few residents of the Wells Estate, also their family members, will have watched Wimbledon play over the years, particularly as it is very much a family-friendly club. So, this book will bring back many happy memories.
The published price of the book We Are Home is £30. You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to bid for one of the two donated books. There is no starting price and bids will close at the end of March. Proceeds will be given direct to Epsom Wells Community Association.
The AFC Wimbledon story shows what a community can do when they work together. We thank Ian and AFC Wimbledon so much for this fundraising initiative.
To find out more about EWCA and our campaign to reopen The Wells Centre, please send us an email or join our email list.