Football in crisis: North Leeds club tells of struggle to survive

DARK CLOUDS OVERHEAD: Peter Job with the Western Juniors team he has run for 50 years.
DARK CLOUDS OVERHEAD: Peter Job with the Western Juniors team he has run for 50 years.
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One of Leeds’s oldest amateur football teams is among those facing an uncertain future because of the rise in pitch fees.

Western Juniors FC, based in Harehills, are facing their biggest test since they were formed in 1962 as they battle to meet a £1,000 bill from council sports bosses.

Stalwart Peter Job, 72, who has dedicated his life to the club, running its two open age sides almost single-handedly for the past 50 years, says he has no idea how they will meet the costs and fears it could spell the end for the historic outfit.

He says the players, who all come from the east Leeds area, already struggle to meet their pay-as-you-play subs when they turn out for the Yorkshire Amateur League side.

Peter told the YEP: “I’ve more or less been running the club on my own as far as management is concerned for the past 50 years since it started up. We’re an open age team and a lot of the lads are from the Gipton and Halton areas. Next year will be our 50 year anniversary but we have a bill coming up for £1,000 for the pitch fees and I don’t know if we’re actually going to make it.

“It always goes up every year but this is a rise of about 15 per cent. We knew this year was going to be tough but we don’t know where we’re going to find the money from.”

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