In this week’s blog I’m going to have a look back and reflect on what an incredible year we have had at the Football Fun Factory, celebrate the hard work and endeavour of so many people, and as thank you to all of you who have supported us on our journey so far.
It is absolutely mind blowing to say but in 2023 over 50,000 children attended our unique Football experiences! I can’t tell you how happy and proud that makes me feel and is of course testament to our incredible superstar Head Coaches who are delivering our programmes. Everything we do at the FFF is built around the why, and the why is giving children of all abilities the opportunity to enjoy the beautiful game in a pressure free environment. And that’s always been the case from the first session James put on over 6 years ago now! The incredible vision of our co-founders James and Jonny are now seeing us do that on a mass scale and 2024 we will be working harder than ever to smash that record!
We were delighted to renew our partnership with Center Parcs for another two years which sees the Football Fun Factory programmes run at the 5 villages in the UK and 1 in Ireland on a daily basis. I’ve had the amazing feeling of visiting Center Parcs on holiday with my family and seeing the programmes up and running and it really is something to behold! And to add the cherry to the cake the FFF experience was voted the number 1 children’s activity in the whole of Center Parcs Uk and Ireland. This is due to the wonderful work of their staff and the incredible training given to them by Jonny.
We had 25 brand new Head Coaches join our team in 2023 which takes us to close to 90 delivering our programmes up and down the Uk as we get ever closer to the 100 mark which will be another momentous day for the company. Having said that, it’s always been about quality rather than quantity and we’re so grateful that all of our team put their trust in us and came on board. And this month we’re delighted to be launching our first overseas franchise with Coach Rob becoming our first franchisee in the Republic of Ireland. To add to that we had a new face join the team at HQ with Adam Staight coming onboarded to join Oli as a full time part of the content team, and he has made a fantastic impact already.
We were delighted and honoured to be named the winner of the Best New Entry at the WorkBuzz Franchise awards as James and Jonny got dressed up and picked up a trophy. It’s always a great feeling to be recognised for the work of our whole team, and the good news didn’t stop there as we were also named in the top 100 franchises as one of the top new entries!
In the summer we hosted our first franchise conference which saw the team get together at Woburn Center Parcs for a day of learnings and celebration of everyone’s hard work. This was a hugely special day and spending the day with our superstar Head Coaches has really whet our appetite with plans already in place for this year’s event!
We’ve seen continued growth in Northern Ireland with two Head Coaches doing a grand job expertly led by FFF legend Kiefer McAlinden, our master franchisee for the country. And I’m delighted to say that this team is about to grow so please do keep your eyes peeled for some breaking news!
And finally 2023 saw us launch the Football Fun Factory podcast which sees James, Jonny and I discuss subjects connected to children’s football and we’ve certainly had a blast recording it and in true FFF fashion had loads of fun!
It was most definitely quite a year, and quite crazy to think we’re only just getting started! Once again thank you for all your support, we couldn’t do it without you.