Wivelsfield Green FC will display banners at its games advertising that the forecourt is a sponsor

Pricewatch Group is sponsoring a local football team to get closer to the community it serves at its tenth forecourt, a Gulf site which it opened this spring in Wivelsfield, East Sussex.

The development – the property had previously been a car dealership with petrol pumps and a small kiosk – had met local opposition with some residents fearing that a village shop with a post office would haemorrhage business to Pricewatch’s Morrisons Daily convenience store, with its longer opening hours and larger offering. 

However, since the opening at the end of March residents appear to have been won over with the store smashing its fuel and food sale targets. 

The family-owned business has given £2,500 to Wivelsfield Green FC, which plays in the eleventh tier of English football, in division one of the Mid Sussex Football League and was founded in 1911.

Team coach Andy Dumbrell says that the donation will pay for the kit and its printing, with some money left over for pitch hire and referee fees. 

“it is very expensive to run a football club and so we are very grateful for the support,” said Andy. “But it is also good for our profile to be linked to big brands like Gulf and Morrisons Daily.”

For Wivelsfield Service Station having its name printed on the players’ strip is an important sign that the business wants to play its part in getting involved in the neighbourhood, says Paul Salvidge, one of the two brothers behind the company.

“We want to show our regulars that we are committed to putting something back into the community, and the local football team is a fun thing for us to be involved in,” said Paul, who gave the team some beer for after an important game last weekend.

The team has also offered to display banners at its games advertising that the forecourt is a sponsor, with the Man of the Match having his photo taken in front of this to share on social media. “We have around 1,200 followers on Twitter, and we intend to get the players to re-tweet our posts after the games,” said Andy.