About Us

THE 1066 Specials Football Club gives people with special needs and disabilities the opportunity to play football and receive expert coaching. The club provides opportunities to play the sport in a fun and friendly environment. We accept players from five-years-old, right through to our adult sides. All coaching is by qualified coaches who are trained and have been screened for their suitability for working with young people.

We welcome parents and guardians to all training and competitions and value your support. We are keen to try and involve parents in the club, so please become involved if you are interested. You only have to ask one of the friendly faces you’ll find at any of our training sessions or pick up the phone. Training sessions currently take place on the first and last Saturday of every month and arrangements should be made for your child to travel to and from training and matches.

The 1066 Specials offer a wonderful environment where everyone can enjoy ‘the beautiful game’. Many of the players here have developed better social skills and had their confidence boosted due to their membership of the club. As well as improving their football abilities, members and their families form a strong bond and develop close friendships. This allows the club to have a real family atmosphere – and new members will always be given a warm welcome.

If you would like to talk to someone at the club about any aspect of the 1066 Specials, including your child’s involvement, please contact us.

We look forward to meeting you at some point in the future.

Club History

The 1066 Specials Football Club has come a long way in just a few short years. Founded in the spring of 2003 the club was the brainchild of Harold Lawrence who was influenced by his nephew, Martin Forsdyke, who played for Brighton and Hove Albion’s ‘Special Seagulls’ team.

Recognising the need for children and adults with disabilities to have the opportunity to play football, the 1066 Specials were set up with support from the Rotary Club and Rother District Council’s sports development officer, Adrian Gaylon. Since its formation the club has received support from a wide range of organisations, businesses and volunteers. The club has grown steadily in size and now has a programme of training its own coaches to FA standards. The Specials now accept players of all ages and its membership now totals over 100.

In 2006 the Specials achieved Sussex Sports Partnership Approved Club status, the first club in the county to do so. The Rother Safe Sport Initiative Certificate of Achievement was also awarded in 2006. In early 2007 The Specials were awarded Football Association Charter Standard Club status. Charitable status followed in April 2007. Then, in late 2008, the club received a most welcome boost when ex-Beatle and Sussex resident Sir Paul McCartney agreed to become patron of the charity.

In 2013 the Specials celebrated their 10th anniversary and were honoured to receive the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service, which is the MBE for groups. The award was presented by the Lord Lieutenant of East Sussex, Peter Field, on behalf of Her Majesty.

The club were founder members of the Kent Disability League and in 2014 became founder members of the Sussex FA Disability League.

Since its foundation in 2002, the 1066 Specials Football Club have provided football training to 250 young people.