Sporting Force was established in 2015 by Tommy Lowther with a simple mission - to help the wounded, injured, and sick serving and ex-service men and women make the transition from a life in the military to life as a civilian through placements in the sports industry. We are proud to be a registered charity under the number 1169441.
Aren’t There Already a Lot of Organisations Supporting the Military?
Yes, and we work alongside many of them. These organisations often focus on physical recovery, mental health, or financial support. At Sporting Force, our focus is on providing opportunities and work placements in the sports industry, initially through professional football clubs.
Life in the military is very active, and by working with sports organisations, we can offer opportunities that appeal to those with an active background, ignite a passion, and help create a new life outside of the services.
Tommy is ex-services having served with the 1st Battalion Light Infantry and, as a sufferer of PTSD, has been in the position that so many ex-soldiers find themselves in - having trouble with what most would consider day-to-day tasks. Having won his own battle and addressed PTSD with a positive attitude, he became aware of the shocking statistics of those not so fortunate, and through his own involvement in sport, the idea of Sporting Force was born.
CHERYLANNE LOWTHER – VETERAN LIAISON
Cherylanne Lowther is our veteran liaison, she is ex-services having served with A 29 Medical Squadron. She was posted to Hohne, Germany, in 2003, and was deployed to Iraq in 2004. Cherylanne worked in the med stores sending medical equipment out to different locations around Iraq. Since leaving the army, she felt that something was missing from her life, but now believes she has filled the gap with the privilege of working for Sporting Force.
JACQUI NICHOLSON – OPERATIONS MANAGER
Jacqui’s extensive experience in charities and fundraising, as well as business management in education and the private sector, make her an invaluable member of the team. She is the perfect person to look after our fundraising activities and the business end of our charity, using her financial insight and depth of business knowledge. She also has extensive knowledge and experience in safeguarding, DBS processes, and recruitment.
ADAM HOLLAND – BUSINESS ADMINISTRATOR
Previously working in hospitality management in Northamptonshire, Adam came to Sporting Force to undertake new challenges, bringing with him a variety of transferable skills.
Website and social media management is his forte, along with a desire to help people.
With Jacqui as his mentor, Adam will learn a great deal.
HOWARD WILKINSON - PATRON
Howard is a legend in the football community, his successful managerial career began at Notts County. Howard went on to manage many other clubs, including Leeds United, where he won the First Division Championship in 1992, he remains the last English manager to win the top-flight league in England.
The knowledge, experience and guidance he will bring to Sporting Force, makes him the ideal Patron.
Sporting Force is proud to announce the signing of our first ambassador – Owen Bainbridge. Professional footballer Owen was born partially sighted, but lost his vision completely when he was seven years old. Owen was part of the Great Britain team that won silver at the finals of the ISBA World Games held in Seoul in May 2015.
Owen, 25, has won 35 caps playing for England, and is now in training for the IBSA Blind Football European Championships, which are to be held in August. Owen is excited to be part of Sporting Force and is looking forward to helping promote its mission. You can find him on Twitter - @OwenBainbridge3.
Anthony "Tony" McMahon is an English footballer who plays as a right back for Bradford City. Born in Bishop Auckland, County Durham, McMahon started his playing career with Middlesbrough, with whom he spent eight seasons before his move to Sheffield United in 2012. Having had loan spells with Blackpool and Sheffield Wednesday, McMahon was capped at international youth level, playing in the 2003 Under-17 and 2005 Under-19 European Football Championships. On the 3rd of July 2015 - Bradford City signed him on a two-year deal after he was released by Blackpool.
Mark Tinkler is an English former professional footballer and Academy Coach at Premier League side Middlesbrough.
As a player, he was a Midfielder from 1991 to 2009, notably in the Premier League for Leeds United. He also played for York City, Southend United, Hartlepool United, Livingston and Whitby Town.
Lamin Manneh was injured in a an IED attack. He had moved with his family from Gambia to Manchester four years earlier and followed his dream to join the British Army, enlisting with the Irish Guards. As a result of the attack, Lamin is now a triple amputee.
Lamin has taken up sitting volleyball and archery, saying that sport enables him to express himself and competes in both these sports at the Invictus Games where he has won medals.