News 2010 Details


‘Wanderers House’ - Home to Future Success


With the 2010 outdoor season knocking at its door, Bolton Wanderers Soccer Club (BWSC) has pulled up roots and moved to a new home. Situated on Glasgow Road, just behind Jack Garratt Soccer Park is the club’s new centre of operations – ‘Wanderers House’.

"I think most club members would agree that our previous location was somewhat restrictive in terms of space and too far from the fields,” says BWSC President, William Hay.  After having its eye on the property for a few years, BWSC was presented with the opportunity to lease the land from the Toronto Region Conservation Authority (TRCA).   Support from Caledon Councillors Annette Groves and Richard Whitehead along with the mayor helped to bring the parties together.    

Wanderers House promises to provide the club with a wealth of opportunities – from space to conduct training and education of coaches and referees to a facility for players to screen and review matches.  Plenty of storage is also available for uniforms and equipment.   Wanderers House also eliminates what was a constant need for rental of other facilities for larger meetings and registration.

Renovations to the property began in January, and since mid-March Wanderers House has been operational.  However, there’s still plenty of work to be done: renovations to the basement which will provide the club with an opportunity to hold individual team functions and rental of this space to other community organizations.  Volunteer support and members from the different trades contributing their talents, time, and materials have helped keep expenses down. 

Hay believes that club members will be amazed at what’s been done on a relatively small budget.  There’s also the added bonus of a very generous lease with the TRCA which will help offset a large portion of the leasehold expenses in the club’s first term. “Wanderers House will be the centre of the club’s program for the next 10 years - recreational, competitive, academy and indoor - and I believe a model for other clubs.   Our board of directors has adopted the vision that we can exceed the mandate of the normal community club.   We can be leaders in the soccer and sports community."

That leadership continues to be demonstrated through the club’s renewed affiliation with the Bolton Wanderers Football Club of English Premier League.   Additional coaching education and other resources have been negotiated between the professional club and its Canadian partner.   These resources will benefit BWSC as whole – both on the competitive and recreational side.

Last year, BWSC registered outdoor players from more than 10% of Bolton’s population and 85% were recreational participants.   BWSC was also one of the first clubs in the province to implement the Canadian Soccer Association’s Long Term Development Plan.  A radical transformation took place, having many parents scratching their heads at first, but eventually praising the changes at season’s end.  “It’s never easy when you’re first out of the gate”, Hay commented.   “We’ve had to change the culture – return to the fundamentals with younger players; the emphasis being on fun - especially for those getting in their first kicks.   And, we have indeed moved forward.” 

Moving forward means the continuation of having staff coaches present to assist recreational teams – something that other clubs traditionally reserve for representative teams only.  “Having them work at the grassroots alongside our recreational team coaches is an investment in BWSC’s future as is our move to Wanderers House.  Both are worth every cent to our members and the game.” 

BWSC’s recreational programs launch the last week of May, and “official” Opening Weekend is scheduled for June 5 and 6 in Bolton (Edelweiss Park) and Valleywood (Lina Marino Park).

...Story by: Wally Mikulski


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