Slough is known as the host town of many large corporations, but it also has a lot of offer in terms of culture. It is considered one of the country’s most ethnically diverse populations and has been an important working town for many immigrants since the 1920s. It also is home to the Heart of Slough, a £400M business and shopping district.
Diversity and culture certainly run through East Berkshire’s grassroots football teams. This is a great way for international communities to bond through the love of football. Other teams are the core reason why villages have a stable economy, while other teams support local churches.
Singh Sabha Slough
Singh Sabha Slough FC is a team that represents Slough’s Sikh community. It aims to be a positive influence on Sikhs and the wider Slough area through motivational quotes and videos on its social media accounts.
The club has been known for its numerous social campaigns. It has supported the inclusion of more South Asians in professional football and wants the Premier League to increase the number of South Asian footballers over the next few years. A more recent and equally important campaign supports Indian farmers, especially in the Punjab.
The team played one league game this season prior to the lockdown in December, winning 6-1 against St Peters Ivers. Hassan Mohamed and Pritpal Raju had braces in that game. Mandeep Chahal and Navsher Sharma scored to round off the win.
The small village of Old Windsor has supported its local football team since 1898, and going to games on weekends is a major part of village life. Its infamous black and red stripes can be seen throughout the village on a matchday.
Many local legends have played for the club since it formed a first team in the 1950s. Malcolm Swain played for Old Windsor after he left Reading and became known for his effective passing. Jimmy Critcher and Gary Wade are considered two of the club’s all-time greatest strikers, and Barry Clarke still watches the team today.
The club plays its home games on Saint Luke’s Road, along the A308.
Klub Sportowy Gryf (Gryf Sports Club) is part of Polish Association Slough (Stowarzysznie Polskie Slough). It has two mens football teams and a volleyball team.
The community was set up in Stoke Poges during the 1950s to support Polish families who had moved to the U.K. after the Second World War. It provided jobs and accommodation to new immigrants. Today, the club house has bars, kitchens, bowling greens, and two football pitches.
KS Gryf’s players are mostly of Polish origin, either first- or second-generation. Kacper Malinowski has scored four goals in three games, while Mateusz Golebiewski has scored three goals this season. Golebiewski also captains the team.
Britwell FC’s final league game of 2020 was one to remember. It beat Slough Heating Laurencians 8-2 thanks to braces from Alife Keeler, Danny Goodman and William Conway. Bradley James-Carton and Jermaine Payne also scored.
Britwell’s players wear black and yellow jerseys, which are sponsored by a local off-licence. The club’s nickname is “Steam Team,” and this is a commonly-used hashtag on its social media platforms. The nickname may be a reference to Slough’s steam train manufacturing, but it also could pay homage to a nearby train station and the 23-mile distance from Charing Cross.
St Peters Iver
St Peters Iver is a long-running football and leisure club for footballers of different age groups and mixed ability. It aims to give children an enjoyable, fun and relaxing experience without forcing them to play the sport.
The church’s program was set up in 1996 and expanded in 2000 after a football team was created. Parents showed financial and mutual support, and different age groups were formed. Teams now train at Richings Sports & Social Park, which is described as “the envy of many visiting teams” due to the modern facilities. Church Park hosts the mens team’s practices.
The team has two locations in Richings Park, Buckinghamshire and West Drayton, Middlesex.