Walking Football team

Walking Football Festival hits all the right notes

Middlesex FA hosted their latest Walking Football Festival for over 65s at Bannister Sports Centre in Harrow on 13th February.

With 13 teams and over 100 players taking part, the event was a roaring success with plenty of talent and tricks on show as this format of the game continues to grow and thrive across the county.

Having launched in 2023, Walking Football Festivals are proving to be a real hit for players from both Middlesex and neighbouring counties so MFA were delighted to invite a range of teams from North and West London to take part in this latest iteration.

The growing demand from active Walking Football teams for designated festival days means the 65 year+ age group now gets together monthly to see old friends and display the skills that has seen the format go from strength to strength.

This ever growing part of the population allows players to continue playing organised and ‘competitive’ football in an affiliated environment with FA trained referees to ensure fair play and the rules are abided by.

Organised by MFA Football Development Andrew Perren, all participants had a great day and this level of enthusiasm promises more for the future: “We were delighted with the turn out and the quality of the play on show. Despite greys skies and the light rain, the 4 hours flew by as everyone was so keen to play their matches and have some fun with their team mates and opponents.”

The list of teams included:

Cheshunt Ravens, Community Bees, Hemel Hempstead (Red, Blue & Green), Hive Foundation, Leyton Orient, Meriden, RIP WFC (Mondays and Thursdays), Watford and Uxbridge Amblers

Uxbridge Amblers were the area’s first affiliated walking football club and have received widespread recognition for the work they do across various parts of the club. Spreadheaded by the club’s founder, Mick Geraghty, they are always huge supporters of festivals like this and once again provided plenty of entertainment with both their talent and good humour throughout.

Player-Manager of RIP, who provided two teams for the festival (Mondays and Thursdays), Howard Skolnick, said his players all had a wonderful day: “We started in September of 2014 and the Middlesex FA festival is now the highlight of our monthly calendar. If anyone is considering getting back into football – no matter what their age, I’d encourage them to give it a try both for the exercise and the camaraderie as you’re sure to make new friends.”


Shaun Sherrick is another big proponent of this format of the beautiful game with his well established and successful Barnet FC WFT: “As manager of the club I am always enjoy the friendship banter that football allows you to have as a team sport. The mental benefits are as big as the physical ones for me and the guys as the mental stimulation allows you to forget about the outside world for a few hours and have great fun whilst keeping fit. We started back in 2015 and love events like this so hope to attend many more!”

Barnet WFT

One of Barnet’s Hive Foundation players. Dave Law, echoed the same sentiment: “I’ve been playing walking football for around 4 years but just Barnet a year ago when I turned 70. The competitive spirit lives on from the moment you enter the changing room and start the banter with your team mates, with the pre-match feelings being just the same as when I was a young man as soon as you put the shirt on!”

Whilst the competitiveness is still a part of these festivals, no scores are recorded and enjoyment is the number one priority on the day, which is the overwhelming feeling that everyone involved came away with.

Dave continues: “All the sides are like minded so the comradery between players and teams is wonderful. Walking football is a great way to keep active and the beautiful game still being played and appreciated by large groups of older men and women. I also coach an U14s girls team at my local primary school so love being involved at various levels of the game.”

Hemel Hempstead made the short journey to Bannisters Sports Centre and brought three sides with them which was fantastic to see. Their manager Andy Roads said his teams all had a great day and encourages others to get involved: “If you’re even slightly curious then just do it as I promise you won’t regret making the first step. The dressing room banter is what I missed most about being part of a team when I had to give up playing due to injury, so this format of the game has allowed me back in to an environment I love and I’ve met a wide variety of people who have become friends, all based around our passion for football!”

Hemel Hempstead

At the end of the festival, everyone went home with some great stories of goals scored, saves made, friends met and good times enjoyed with plenty asking after the next date straight away as this format of the game continues to flourish.

To register your interest in future festivals, complete this form

For further details about Walking Football, please click here

Cheshunt Ravens

Watford WFT

Meriden WFT

Hemel Hemstead WFT

Barnet WFT