AFC Wimbledon recently moved back to its historic home of Plough Lane, in a brand new stadium just a stone’s throw from the site of its original ground.
Visitors to the new Cherry Red Records stadium quickly discover that there is much more to the ground – and the club – than mens football. As a fan-owned club, AFC Wimbledon has always prided itself on its involvement in the local community and it offers a wide range of experiences for fans and volunteers.
On match days the new stadium has already become famous for its food park, which the club claims is the best in the Football League, with food offerings ranging from pie and mash to carribean cuisine.
Adjacent to the club shop you will find a unique museum, celebrating the history not just of Wimbledon’s football team but of sport in the local area in general. Wimbledon in Sporting History (WiSH), the charity that runs the museum, has a growing collection of memorabilia from the past 200 years, representing sports including football, tennis, rugby, cricket, hockey and shooting.
The AFC Wimbledon Foundation is the official charity arm of the club, organising a number of charitable activities in the local area. It has a particular focus on health and social inclusion, working with children, women and older citizens to increase the participation of these groups in sports.
Set up originally during the Covid-19 pandemic to support local people during lockdown, the Dons Local Action Group has established itself as a key part of the community. Its most visible activity is the collection of food donations outside a growing number of local supermarkets, but it also helps provide furniture, laptops and tablets to local people in need.
While the phoenix-like rise of the mens football team is well known, AFC Wimbledon also has a highly-successful womens team, which currently competes in Division 1 of the FA Women’s National League, the 4th tier of womens football in England. The team recently completed an entire season losing only a single game, and reached the 4th round of the Women’s FA Cup.
All of which underlines AFC Wimbledon’s proud boast to be a “Community Club”.