Badminton Wales signs MOU with the Mid Glamorgan Junior Badminton Association

I am delighted to have facilitated the transfer of funding from Mid Glamorgan Junior Badminton to Badminton Wales to support future Welsh Badminton stars. Richard Vaughan.

Badminton Wales are delighted to announce a new fund to help with the costs for young badminton players from the Mid Glamorgan area.

The Mid Glamorgan Junior Badminton Association (MGJBA) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Badminton Wales to utilise the remaining MGJBA funds to provide annual grants to players who are on National Welsh Teams to help with the costs associated with the sport.

The Mid Glamorgan Junior Badminton Association was traditionally the strongest badminton associations in Wales with once hundreds of badminton players in its squads and a thriving club network.

Notable former Mid Glamorgan Junior players were Olympians Kelly Morgan (Tonteg) and Richard Vaughan (Llanbradach), but a significant number of Welsh teams were full of players who were part of the Mid Glamorgan Junior Squads at the early stages of their pathway development.

A special thank you to all the volunteers involved, it is hard to cover everyone but some notable appreciation to:

Dennis Blowers Dennis Clark
Kay Phipps John and Cath Lee
Malcom Davies Norton Blunt
Ray Charlotti Veronica and Phil Gardner
Peter Egan Sue Noakes
Sharon Vaughan

MGJBA Chair John Thomas commented “It is with some sadness that we have had to dissolve MGJBA after such a rich history, but we are happy Badminton Wales have been able to step in and help ensure the remaining funds go towards supporting young players in the Mid Glamorgan area with their badminton. We thank Badminton Wales for that and hope these funds help future young Welsh players.”

Former Olympian and Mid Glamorgan Junior Squad member Richard Vaughan commented “I was lucky to join the MGJ Squads when I was around 7/8 years of age. I actually started at a club in Bargoed with Norton Blunt and Malcom Davies who were part involved in helping start MGJBA by encouraging their players to go to the squads.  A number of other coaches had the same passion, energy and constructive approach and the accumulation of these young players from Bargoed, Ystrad Mynach, Caerphilly, Tonteg, and the Rhondda was enough to start MGJBA.

It was a strong squad system, with a lot of players of all levels, with good coaches such as Dennis Blowers, John Lee to name a few, and it was the perfect pathway for me to develop at that young age. We had structured competitions within the English Intern County system, and all of this strengthened clubs and made an environment where coaches could develop. For example Don Griffiths, Chris Rees, and others all started their coaching around this time as well which further benefitted Welsh players.

There were so many outstanding players over the years, there are literally too many to name, but some of them included Geraint Lewis, Alan Thomas, Simon Richards, Chris Davies, Geraint Davies, Simon Rowe, Rachel Phipps, Nia Davies, and Kelly Morgan.

There are so many volunteers that have made remarkable contribution for the sport to numerous athletes in various ways. Norton and Malcolm were my first coaches, Dennis Clark, and Veronica Gardener were involved with National squads as well as Mid Glamorgan. Sue Noakes was a private tutor for me when I was in school, as I had missed a lot of time with badminton, she was Headmaster of Lewis Girls School, and passed away too young. The Sports Facility in Ystrad Mynach is named after Sue for contribution to the local area, Badminton was a key part of that thanks to her daughter Trudi Noakes who was a top British Junior player and in the Welsh Junior Teams.

My mum, Sharon, and John Thomas have been the last two of the original group of stakeholders involved in establishing MGJBA and they will be happy knowing the remaining funds are going to good use through Badminton Wales”.

The fund will be held by Badminton Wales with the application process opening annually in line with Junior National Squad Trial and selection.  The fund provides the opportunity for Mid Glamorgan players to apply for funding to support with training and competition costs.

Badminton Wales will open the fund application through our media channels with a closing date set.

MGJBA funding award criteria is as follows: –

  1. All applicants must have a minimum four-year residency within the Mid Glamorgan boundary and currently be a resident within the Mid Glamorgan boundary.
  1. All applicants must be under the age of 19.
  1. All applicants must have a British Passport.
  1. All applicants must at a minimum level demonstrate the ability to represent an official Badminton Wales National team.
  1. The maximum individual grant amount is 100GBP.

Badminton Wales would like to thank the many volunteers that have been involved with Mid Glamorgan Junior Badminton Association throughout the years.  With a rich history of producing outstanding Welsh Players the MGJBA Fund will ensure that supporting Junior Welsh National Squad players from the area will continue through the development fund.

The closing date for applications is 30th April 2023 and you can Download the MGJBA funding application form here

I am delighted to have facilitated the transfer of funding from Mid Glamorgan Junior Badminton to Badminton Wales to support future Welsh Badminton stars. Richard Vaughan.


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