Season of celebrations set to continueThe Carlisle United Supporters’ Club London Branch will continue a season of celebrations marking their 40th anniversary this weekend as they sponsor two matches at Brunton Park, including the final game of United’s season against Hartlepool United on Saturday afternoon. Ahead of returning on Sunday to sponsor the final game of the Carlisle United Ladies team’s season, the Branch will hold a networking event in Foxy’s on Saturday evening which is open for all fans to attend.
The support of the Hartlepool game is just the latest in a series of sponsorships and donations that has seen the Branch contribute in excess of £10,000 to Carlisle United over the past twelve months. The season started with the highly successful #shanklyshirt campaign, which has seen over 400 shirts sold, and at half time in Saturday’s match the Branch will present a cheque for £2,500 to United to represent monies raised both by the now iconic #shanklyshirt and their 40 Club monthly draw which has been running all season.
After full time, the Branch will welcome guests and representatives from fans groups into Foxy’s for an informal networking evening taking place from 6 p.m. onwards. All supporters wanting to get involved with working more closely together into the future are encouraged to attend.
Following on from Saturday’s activity, the Branch will sponsor the Carlisle United Ladies team’s match against Leigh RMI Ladies, also being held at Brunton Park, as the team look to finish an excellent season on a high. The match will be the third of the team’s game the Branch has sponsored this season as they continue to support United’s Ladies both vocally and financially. Ahead of this, Friday evening will see members supporting the team in their County Women’s Cup Final against Penrith AFC Ladies at Gillford Park.
For the London Branch, their season of celebrations actually started last April, with the launch of the #shanklyshirt. Since then they have supplemented the shirt will a full range of merchandise marking their 40th anniversary, including transferring the popular Shankly design onto a mug. All merchandise is available on their website and will also be on sale at Saturday evening’s networking event.
The season’s programme of events began with members attending the first game of the season against Luton Town in support of the #cufc6000 campaign, and regular day trips from the capital to Carlisle have allowed many members to travel to more matches than ever before both at home and on the road. November saw the Branch act as Associate Sponsors for United’s game against Accrington Stanley, and they extended the weekend to sponsor the following day’s Ladies team game against Stockport County Blues. Further sponsorship of the team’s game against Bury Girls & Ladies would follow later in the season.
Back in the capital, November also saw the Branch return to The Finborough Arms, the pub in Earl’s Court which hosted the very first London Branch meeting 40 years ago. The celebrations continued into January as the Branch held a sold out Anniversary Dinner at The Canbury Arms in Kingston following United’s victory at AFC Wimbledon. Guests took part in Q&A sessions with Keith Curle, Colin West, John Gorman and Les O’Neill before being addressed by United MD John Nixon.
The celebrations will not end on Sunday either, with the Branch set to travel to the home of football as they hold their 40th Annual General Meeting in Wembley over the summer.
To find out more about the London Branch visit their website, www.carlislelondonbranch.org, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or follow them on Twitter, @cusclbontour.