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An Eccles based Boys & Girls Club has been recognised in the Queen’s birthday honours.

Barton AC has been in existence for over 60 years but has been on something of a rollercoaster journey over the last 10 or 15 years. But now, thanks to the amazing efforts of the clubs volunteers, the club has now built it’s own home, for the first time in it’s history, and now been recognised for it’s contribution to and it’s place in the community

In 2007, Barton AC were evicted from their long-term home at the Scout’s Drill Hall on Cromwell Road in Eccles. Nobody new what lay ahead for them, but the ‘Save Barton AC’ campaign was started, and a new chapter was about to be written in the club’s history.

Thanks to sheer weight of determination and support from the local community, the club moved around a number of temporary homes.

Before long, Salford City Council had found a piece of land where the club could build their own facility. All that was needed now was the funds to be able to do so.

Suffice to say, that over the next 10-years, the volunteers at the club raised over £700,000 in grants and support. Enough to build a state-of-art Boxing, Wrestling, Weight Lifting and running and fitness club, that rivals any commercial gym you will find.

Club Chairman, Vice President and Treasurer of Barton AC.
Left to right, Vice President of Barton Frank Blackburn, Club Chairman Malcolm Moncrief and Treasurer John Lightfoot, join together to officially open the new Barton AC building.

The difference is, that Barton AC is genuinely community-based club, built and run by local people, for local people.

On the weekend of Friday 7th January 2019, Barton ‘officially’ opened – although they have been open and running for the last 5 years. The club wanted to celebrate the great victory they had achieved in going from ‘no home’ to a new almost ‘palatial home.’ They wanted to thank all those who had supported them - either financially, or through gifts of time, equipment and expertise. But they also wanted to celebrate the amazing voluntary efforts of the many volunteers from the club who committed time, money and effort to securing the future of this valuable community club.

Inside the marquee at the Barton AC opening weekend.
Inside the marquu at the Barton AC opening weekend.

Over that weekend Barton erected a large marquee and opened the doors to volunteers, supporters and the public and celebrated all that had been achieved. The weather may have been more than a little damp, but the celebrations certainly weren’t.

The icing on the cake came in the week leading up to the celebratory weekend when the club found out that they had been awarded the Queens Award for Voluntary Service in the Queen’s Birthday Honours. A fitting conclusion to this part of the story. But as the club Chairman Malcolm Moncreiff would undoubtedly say, it’s only the conclusion of this chapter. Thanks to the efforts of all concerned, there will be much more to come now that they have a permanent home and they have great plans for what they want to do next – watch this space!!

Congratulations to EVERYONE at Barton AC. Your Queen’s Award is well deserved – from all at Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Manchester.



Throughout May, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Manchester ran their annual 5-a-side Championships. The winners and runners up went on to represent Greater Manchester at the National Association of Boys & Girls Clubs UK 5-a-side tournament where they played other teams from as far afield as London, Durham and London.

Our teams achieved considerable success across all age groups with two teams taking home winners medals and another team getting their hands-on runners up awards.

On Saturday 8th June 2019, around 400 young people from all over the UK descended on the 5’s Soccerdome at Trafford Park. Boys & Girls had arrived to take part in the UK Finals of the NABGC 5-a-side tournament. Teams had progressed from their local and regional tournaments to this showpiece event.

Representing Greater Manchester were – Whitemoss Clubs for Young People and Droylsden Juniors in the U12’s, West End Boys & Girls Club in the U14’s and the Father’s Unite Project in the U16’s.

It could have been overwhelming for a number of the youngsters concerned, but all acquitted themselves really well.

Unfortunately for Whitemoss CYP, despite playing some good competitive Football, they were unable to progress beyond the group stages of the U12’s. But as volunteer Jonny Biggs said, “We and the lads have had a great time.” Team manager, “Baba”, was reliving his own youth at the event. As a youngster in 1992, he had himself played for Whitemoss as a goalkeeper in the same event. He said, “I loved taking part in this tournament as a youngster, we had a great time. And the lads today have enjoyed it. Even thought they haven’t progressed, it has been a great experience.”

The rest of the Greater Manchester teams made great progress.

Droylsden, who were also in the U12s progressed beyond the group stages and eventually into the final where they beat Glenn Parent Youth Club from Northern Ireland.

Likewise, in the U14’s, it was a Greater Manchester versus Glenn Parent final, this time West End Boys & Girls Club were the Greater Manchester representatives. Glenn Parent had a very strong team in the U14’s and despite West End pulling back a late goal, they couldn’t quite pull back their Irish opposition and force them to additional time or penalties. West End were worthy runners up in the U14’s.

In the U16’s, against all the odds, Father’s Unite Project managed to make it to the final despite only having five players – no substitutes! Not only did they make it to the final, they went on to win the national finals on penalties. The final was a close event. The lads from Manchester were 3-1 down at one point, but managed to pull things back, once again, against Irish opposition from Omagh Boys Club. The penalties went to sudden death where the boys from Omagh missed their final penalty presenting the win to Greater Manchester team.

It was a great tournament and great day. Well done to everyone involved. Especially well done to our teams and volunteers from Greater Manchester.



A club affiliated to Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Manchester, is a major part of an exhibition at the Gallery Oldham.

Oldham Boxing & Personal Development, which started life as Oldham Lads Club around 50-years ago, forms part of the “Oldham Stories” exhibition currently running in Gallery 1.

The club are featured alongside a number of artefacts that tell the rich history of Oldham and its people.

A selection of photographs from the exhibition

A whole section of the Oldham Stories exhibition tells the Oldham Boxing story and depicts the difference the club has made in the lives of many people, young and old through offering opportunities in the sport of Boxing, but also through personal development programmes delivered through the club and the many volunteering opportunities that are available.

Please get along and have a look and leave your comments. Entry is free, with a donation requested. There is even 2-hours of free parking nearby.

A selection of photographs from the exhibition



The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Manchester are encouraging young people in their affiliated clubs to explore their creativity.

Four clubs across our network are taking part in poetry and singing workshops being delivered by our friends at Z-Arts.

Young people from Whitemoss Club for Young People and Collyhurst and Moston Boxing Club are enjoying eight sessions of Poetry workshops, whilst others from 4CT’s Grange Centre and a number of participants from St John’s ABC are expressing themselves music and song.

These workshops follow on from a number of singing workshops just before Christmas 2019 and are part of a number of pilot projects that we have been delivering.

The young people taking part in the sessions are having a great time and being inspired. John Biggs from Whitemoss enthused, “These young people are being inspired!!”

Subject to funding being secured, we hope to be able to deliver further sessions

If you would like to be involved in any arts programmes that we run, please make sure you let us know so that we can bear you in mind. You can do so by contacting the office on 0161 660 4091 or emailing Andy on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Upcoming Events

Take a look at a few of our upcoming events. Further details can be found under Upcoming Events at the top of the page.

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