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Bloomsbury Football started with a conversation. Well, there was a little bit more to it than that, but a conversation kicked it all off. 

Let’s rewind to 2018.  

Our CEO Charlie was finishing his degree at university, during which he had been travelling to and from London every weekend to coach his grassroots team.

Charlie has always loved football. As a lifelong Arsenal fan, he remembers the first match he ever went to. It was at the old Arsenal stadiums during the team’s unbeaten season. The size of the stadium, the lights, the sounds, the crowd- he was hooked. 

Charlie played football throughout his childhood, and it was when he started coaching that he really saw the power that football has to help young people.

Coaching throughout his time at university, Charlie began to see certain challenges on the grassroots level. The facilities that young people were playing on were often not good enough – pitches were uneven and waterlogged in the winter. Sessions were sometimes unorganised and high-quality equipment was not always accessible. 

Further, evidence of the high price point of sessions was clear – too many young people were getting priced off the pitch, and football sessions were reflecting the wider social division in London.  

This was set against a backdrop of intersecting social challenges faced by young people; rising levels of social isolation, obesity, mental illness and crime rates in the capital city.  

Charlie had experienced and seen first-hand how football can support young people to become happier and healthier, learn life skills and have a strong community. He believed this was something that should be accessible to everyone, regardless of their background or where they live.  

So back to that conversation…  

In 2018, Charlie was revising for his university finals in a café in London. He bumped into Dan and Mark, parents of players on his team. They began talking about these problems and how football was becoming an increasingly inaccessible sport.  


A couple of weeks later, Charlie coached Bloomsbury Football’s first session on a pitch in Camden. Four children attended, and two of these young people played for free. This is the model and the ethos we have grown with- no young person will ever be turned away from a Bloomsbury Football session.


Why ‘Bloomsbury’? We are proud to be called Bloomsbury Football because we are connected to the rich cultural and educational heritage of this iconic area in London. We wanted to mark the area in which we were founded and stay true to our mission; to stay rooted in our community. Yet, we’re not limited to this area of London- our goal is to become London’s biggest grassroots football organisation, ensuring that no family is ever priced out of the game.


We’ve grown a lot since that first session on a pitch in Camden.

Our team now has over 35 full-time members of staff and more than 50 coaches who run sessions around London each day. We are proud to engage over 5,000 young people each week through a range of programmes and have ambitious plans to scale up this impact.

We are proud of how far we’ve come, and this is just the beginning for Bloomsbury Football. Driven by our mission, we are dedicated to reaching more young people, running more sessions and having a greater social impact- all through the power of the beautiful game.