Member News & Events

Come See AFC Bournemouth U23’s vs Southampton U23’s

We are delighted to offer AFC Business members an exclusive event giving you the chance to combine football, hospitality and networking.

The Cherries will be looking to do the double over south coast rivals Southampton and secure their place in the knockout stages of the Premier League Cup. The squad is set to feature future stars such as Alex Dobre and Gavin Kilkenny who have already made their first-team debuts.

Treat clients or staff to a night under the lights at Vitality Stadium and join us for our AFC Business Premier League Cup evening on Friday 21st February.

Hosted in Bubbles Champagne Lounge from 5pm, guests will receive a pre-match buffet, drinks vouchers and access to our executive seating. The perfect way to start the weekend.

Places are just £35 + VAT and can be booked here. For more information, please contact

We hope to see you on the night!

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Junior Cherries partners sign up for season

AFC Bournemouth have renewed their association with the four official partners of the Junior Cherries for the 2019/20 season.

The Premier League club has linked again with Bournemouth University, Hot Rocks restaurant and bar, Lemur Landings at Tower Park and Splashdown Waterparks.

Amy Marks, the club’s Partnerships Manager, said: “All four businesses are well-established partners and we are delighted to be continuing our long and fruitful relationship.

“We want to thank each of them for their support – it’s because of backing like this that the Junior Cherries can operate successfully and competitively and offer so much for so many young people across the region.”

Bournemouth University is a long-term partner of the club and has extended its partnership with the popular Junior Cherries scheme for a third season.

Hot Rocks restaurant and cocktail bar enjoys a prestigious location next to Bournemouth Pier where flavours from around the world are expertly cooked from fresh ingredients, are available on the premises.

Lemur Landings at Tower Park is a new generation children’s entertainment centre for those under the age of 12 with massive soft play frames, a climbing zone, a role play village, and party venue for children.

Splashdown Waterparks, which have water slide parks in Poole and Devon, is a great day out for family and friends, with something for everyone.

Special offers from AFC Bournemouth’s Junior Cherries official partners include: £3 discount off entry any time at Splashdown Waterparks in Poole or Paignton, Devon and £2 off and a free adult entry at any time at Lemur Landings indoor soft play, per cardholder.

At Hot Rocks restaurant, Junior Cherries can eat a kid’s meal for just £1 for every adult ordering a main course. Hot Rocks then donates £1 to Julia’s House. Junior Cherries also have a free 2019/20 Nathan Ake pizza voucher with Hot Rocks.

Becoming a Junior Cherry brings many benefits from a range of exclusive offers and events held especially for members.

Memberships cost just £7.50 and will last until the end of the 2019/20 season, when an option to renew will become available.

The benefits include: Invitations to exclusive events with AFC Bournemouth first team players; free replica AFC Bournemouth home shirt on your eighth birthday (terms apply); 10% superstore discount; opportunities to be a league match mascot or flag bearer (age restrictions apply); year-long discounts at Hot Rocks, Splashdown and Lemur Landings; 10% discount on official soccer schools; £2.50 matchday meal deal on concourses and exclusive competition prizes including signed merchandise

To become a Junior Cherry see

To visit the Junior Fanzone before a matchday see

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Village Hotel Club’s boost for Cherries youngsters

AFC Bournemouth is partnering with the Village Hotel for a sixth year in succession.

The Village Hotel will continue its partnership with the Cherries as regional supporters for season 2019/20.

The Village Hotel, located off Castle Lane East, supports AFC Bournemouth’s under-21 squad by providing the team access to the leisure facilities, helping with recovery sessions as well as personal development.

The Village will also continue to sponsor the coaching kit of AFC Bournemouth under-21s manager Shaun Cooper.

Facilities at the Village include a state-of-the-art gym, spin studio, spa, 25-metre swimming pool, meeting and events facilities and free parking.

AFC Bournemouth partnerships manager Amy Marks said: “The Village Hotel in Bournemouth has stunning facilities and provides a brilliant venue for our young players to stay match fit.

“We are delighted to have signed them up for a sixth consecutive year and look forward to an ongoing and fruitful relationship.”

Amy Spreadbury, director of sales at Village Hotels, said: “We are so pleased to be continuing our partnership with AFC Bournemouth which sees the Premier League club’s players utilise our gym, spa and pool.

“Seeing the Cherries youngsters about the place is an inspiration to so many people to stay fit and active – and this perfect link between two regional sporting market leaders keeps that message at the forefront of our minds.”

The Village Hotel is also continuing as an executive partner of AFC Business for a third season running and will be regularly attending corporate and club events.

AFC Business, the free-to-join business club with 1,800 members, is the engine for all the club’s commercial activities.

It was launched in 2009 and gives members exclusive offers at AFC Bournemouth, access to events and is a great chance to meet local businesses. 

The monthly events – consisting of breakfasts, evening occasions and director level events – are well established and regularly sell out in advance.

For further information about the business club, email or call 0344 576 1910

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AFC Bournemouth U18s Cook Up a Storm at Crumbs Project

Crumbs project

AFC Bournemouth’s Under-18s squad recently joined forces with staff at the Crumbs Project for a special charity bake-off.

The Crumbs Project works with adults with mental health conditions, learning disabilities, brain injuries and stabilized addictions, providing supportive training services and work experience. Crumbs specializes in catering training, but also offers a variety of hospitality, housekeeping and administration designed to support trainees into either paid or voluntary work placements.

The under-18s squad partnered up with trainees at the Crumbs Project, with each team creating a variety of unusual bakes to raise funds for the charity through a JustGiving page. The 5 teams each produced a showstopper cake, each combining a unique variety of flavors, some of which included; Beetroot and Chocolate, and Vanilla and Pea.

After baking and a lunch break, completed cakes were judged by staff from the academy, as well as sponsors Strategic Solutions.

Crumbs trainee Dennis, alongside Ryan Glover and Tom Hanfrey stole the show with a delicious carrot cake, being crowned the winners of the competition.

Commenting on the charity bake off Crumbs Operations Manager, Leanne Miller said; “This has been an incredible experience for our trainees to work alongside AFC Bournemouth’s U18s players and show-off their culinary expertise. All our staff and trainees have thoroughly enjoyed themselves and has been one of the many highlights since being chosen as the club’s staff charity partner.”

Donations to the Crumbs Project charity bake off can be made via Just Giving page:

For further information about The Crumbs Project please visit or call 01202 519320.

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Back to college for star defender Chris

Back to college for star defender Chris

Cherries star defender Chris Mepham joined in with young players at the latest Premier League Kicks session staged by the Premier League club.

Project ambassador Chris attended a session for 15 participants on the 3G pitches at Vitality Stadium
Chris got involved by giving the teams a motivational talk, oversaw the five-a-side games and took part in a Q&A session before signing autographs and posing for photos. The event was supported by Bournemouth & Poole College, an official partner of AFC Bournemouth’s Community Sport Trust.

The College, which sponsors Premier League Kicks in the Poole region, became partners with the Cherries in January this year and will also continue its support into 2019/20 season. The College, which has sites at Lansdowne in Bournemouth and North Road and Tower Park in Poole, is the largest provider of further education and apprenticeships in the area.

AFC Bournemouth’s self-funding, non-profit Community Sports Trust (CST) runs the Premier League-backed scheme locally with more than 1,000 young people participating last season. CST head Steve Cuss said: “The project encourages young people to get involved in playing sports in the evenings and at weekends, which sees them benefit from a healthier lifestyle, improved well-being and most importantly offers them a safe environment to enjoy themselves and have fun with friends.

“AFC Bournemouth is very much a community club – we work with and for the community for the benefit of all concerned – hence why the long-term support of one of the area’s major educational establishments is indispensible.”

The latest Premier League Kicks session was part of an employability workshop that Bournemouth & Poole College delivered at the stadium followed by a behind-the-scenes stadium tour carried out by the CST coaches.

The workshop included a presentation on first impressions and how young people should portray themselves in front of potential employers, as well as advice on CV writing and interviews.

The next activities on the 3G pitches included the team building exercise ‘Gutterball’, in which participants worked as a team to move a ball from one end of the pitch to the other, just using pieces of guttering, whilst going around obstacles.

College Commercial Director Matt Butcher said: “A lot of team work and communication was involved in the day – which is exactly how we see our partnership with the Cherries. We are proud to support the Community Sports Trust which does such great work with so many young people right across the area.”

“The players themselves are excellent role models – we are grateful that Chris gave up his time to take part in our event, which was a brilliant extra for our participants. We want to spread our message to young supporters of the Cherries that we are there to help as many young people as possible to go after the career of their dreams and that there are exciting opportunities available at the College.”

Nationally, 69 football clubs are involved in the flagship Premier League Kicks scheme, engaging with more than 225,000 youngsters since 2006. It aims to promote participation in sport in areas of high need, provide opportunities for young people to develop skills and confidence and support young people to progress into positive pathways.

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AFC Business Breakfast

Join the AFC Business team for a morning of coffee and hearty food to kick-start your day and, more importantly, to give you an opportunity to network with lots of friendly faces within the local business community.

We’re less than a month from the next AFC Business Breakfast which takes place on Wednesday 8th May between 7:30am and 9:30am at Vitality Stadium.

The itinerary for the morning is:

  • 7:30am to 8:00am tea and coffee served and the chance to meet other business people in a relaxed and friendly environment
  • 8:20am delicious full English or continental breakfast served
  • 9:00am guests are invited to move tables and meet with other business delegates
  • There will be an opportunity to win a business card draw
  • 9:30am event closes

This breakfast is just £15 plus VAT per person. Due to the popularity of this event, we advise booking early to guarantee your place.

This is the last AFC Business event of the football season, so please bring plenty of business cards to make the most of the morning.

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University on the ball with AFC Bournemouth

University on the ball with AFC Bournemouth

Businesses in Dorset could take a leaf out of AFC Bournemouth’s book and draw upon the skills of Bournemouth University’s students and academics.

More than 70 businessmen and women heard how BU provides the Premier League club with expertise across a range of disciplines.

That included a testing time 11 years ago when the Cherries could barely pay staff before a series of promotions to top-flight football, with BU’s students proudly mucking in.
The March breakfast networking event by AFC Business, which has 2,000 members and is the club’s free-to-join business club, was held at BU’s Fusion Building on Talbot Campus.

BU has been the club’s official higher education partner since 2013, with AFC Bournemouth’s commercial director Rob Mitchell, a BU graduate, forging links back in 2008 when he arrived at the Cherries

He told the audience: “One of the first partnerships I wanted to forge was with the university because of the resources here, the students, the academics – the support that the university could give would be boundless.”

BU has provided the Cherries since 2008 with skills across various disciplines, including sports science, marketing, research, coaching, physiotherapy and media, as well as helping out on match days.

A number of students have gone on to work full-time at AFC Bournemouth, Rob said. “It has been a bit of a career path for them.”

There are also player appearances at BU, with guest talks, special topics and links with equality and diversity and mental health and wellbeing.

BU is also supports AFC Bournemouth’s girls’ football programme as part of the club’s drive to promote and increase female participation in the game.

Attendees heard how the football club and university teamed up on a coaching programme for 180 Chinese students, over three years, as part of China’s bid to be an international force in soccer by 2050.

Jim Andrews, BU’s chief operating officer, said that engagement between business and the university, which has 20,000 students and contributes £1 million a day to the regional economy, is essential if talent is to be kept within the region.

He said: “Something that makes BU distinct is the number of students we have on placement at any one time. We are one of the only institutions to offer a work placement for every undergraduate course. The reason we do that is because work placement means better employment outcomes. It is really important to us that we work with local companies, national companies and international companies to provide those opportunities for our students to get real-life practical experiences because that is what you, as companies, are looking for.”

The event also heard an update on the regional and national economy from Professor Jim Roach and from Ian Jones, head of regional community partnerships at BU.

After the event Rob said: “This was another informative breakfast event for decision-makers and entrepreneurs, with us showing how businesses in Dorset can successfully follow the Cherries’ example by drawing upon the considerable skills and expertise of BU’s students and academics across a range of disciplines.”

For further information about the business club please email Aysia Smith at aysia.smith

Official partners of AFC Business are Bournemouth Chamber of Trade & Commerce, Dorset Chamber of Commerce & Industry, Dorset Mental Health Forum, Hill Osborne and Strategic Solutions.

The next business club event, the spring BBQ, takes place on 11th April at Vitality Stadium, followed by a networking breakfast at the same venue on 8th May.

Paying respects

Thanking the business partners of AFC Business, Rob paid tribute to the late Bill Riddle, the vice president and chairman of Bournemouth Chamber of Trade & Commerce and a highly respected figure in the town’s business community.

Rob said: “Bill was a fantastic supporter of the football club and business club. He was an avid Sunderland supporter but I know that AFC Bournemouth was very close to his heart as well.

“On behalf of the football club I want to send our sincere condolences and thoughts and prayers to Bill’s family, friends and everyone that was associated with Bill as well.”

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Cherries new stars at children’s soccer school

Cherries new stars at children’s soccer school

AFC Bournemouth players Dominic Solanke and Nathaniel Clyne surprised almost 150 children at the Community Sports Trust’s latest soccer school. The Bournemouth sessions, which run throughout every half term and school holiday, are kindly sponsored by local printers CMP Print, based in Poole.

After a day filled with drills, shooting practise and small-sided games, the two players arrived to give out prizes and take part in a question-and-answer session.

Following the presentations, the children grabbed an autograph from the players, both of whom joined the club in the January transfer window. As the day drew to a close, striker Dominic spoke about the importance of such sessions and the development of young players.

“It’s great, I think this is where it all starts. It’s really enjoyable and, back when I was their age, I loved just playing football, so it’s great to see so many here. It’s nice for us to come down and see it all here. It’s exciting for the kids and great to see them smiling. I remember some players doing the same for me so it’s a good feeling to come and do it for them.”

Paul Dawe, owner of CMP Print, also expressed his delight at the growing number of children attending the sessions. “It’s great to see so many people here, in particular the number of girls. It just goes to show how the sessions are evolving. The club put a lot of time into running these soccer schools, which is why we like to get involved and putting something back into it. Everyone does such a great job and it’s nice to be involved.”

AFC Bournemouth have thanked CMP Print, who sponsor the club’s soccer schools in Bournemouth and have been official partners of the Community Sports Trust for four consecutive seasons.

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Surman talks internet safety at school

Surman talks internet safety

To mark this week’s global Safer Internet Day, AFC Bournemouth vice-captain Andrew Surman was a special guest at a Bournemouth school to talk about the importance of staying safe online.

He headed to Bournemouth Collegiate School along with the AFC Bournemouth Community Sports Trust to help deliver the popular Connect with Care project on the subject and hand out prizes to some of the students.

Connect with Care is sponsored by IT Support Business (ITSB) Ltd, which is based in London and Bournemouth.
The IT support and security specialist became an official partner of the Community Sports Trust halfway into the 2016/17 season and is continuing the relationship now, over two years later.

Lee Dredge, CEO of ITSB, said: “It’s about being safe online and using the internet safely. Within the schools themselves we look after the ICT infrastructure and keep pupils safe while they’re in school – and as part of that I feel we have a duty to help educate them for personal internet use for the children and the parents as well.

“It’s really good to be involved and good to be here with Andrew today. The children are really enjoying themselves and it’s a great way to learn – the pupils are really motivated an excited about today.”

Andrew, who is the ambassador for the project, also spoke about his experience at the school. “Being a father myself, internet safety is of utmost importance to me to keep them safe,” the Cherries midfielder explained. “The kids seem like a really good group, we had a question and answer session and they asked some really good questions.”

“They’ve come up with some really good ideas and it’s important to touch base with these kids because sometimes they may not be aware of the dangers online.”

Other CST partners include Yellow Buses, Curtiss-Wright and Goadsby. For more information on partnering with AFC Bournemouth, please email Amy Brunton on: or call: 01202 726313.

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