Tactic Connect are proud to have co-produced an illustrious event for the Paul Canoville Foundation celebrating Black History Month 2018 at the Under the Bridge Club, Stamford Bridge Stadium which took place on 14th October 2018. Entitled Black and Blue Legends, the event was MC’d by our Director Gary Stannett MBE and co-hosted by comedian Omid Djalili. The event was supported by The Football Association and the Professional Footballers Association.
Black and Blue Legends highlighted the significant contribution of black players to the Chelsea FC cause over the years, and also marked the re-launch of the Paul Canoville Foundation following Paul’s illness last year. Tactic Connect have been supporting Paul in the reset of his Foundation and in his other commitments throughout 2018.
An invited audience of 150 supporters, sporting organisations, politicians and community activists joined Paul and other pivotal black players from Chelsea FC over the last 35 years – including Ken Monkou, Paul Elliot CBE, Eddie Newton, Andy Myers and Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink – to discuss a range of topics including changing attitudes in football grounds, the lack of opportunities for black coaches and managers and their own illustrious careers at Stamford Bridge and beyond.
Discussion also focused on the work of the Paul Canoville Foundation and Paul’s commitment to supporting young people to overcome problems and develop life skills to secure a positive future. Drawing on his own life experiences Paul will be visiting schools, delivering workshops and coaching sessions and training young people to become mentors in their own community.
Paul Canoville commented on the night:
‘I want to thank everybody that supported the Black and Blue Legends event at Under the Bridge – my fellow ex-players, sponsors and supporter. It was important that we marked the contribution of black players here at the Bridge and how they have changed attitudes over the year and Black History Month is the perfect time to do it. The support was overwhelming and has given me a massive lift in pursuing the work of my Foundation.’
Tactic Connect Director and event co-host Gary Stannett MBE added:
‘The Black and Blue event was a huge success, possibly the best Black History Month event I have ever seen at a football club. The discussions showed how far football has come since Paul made his debut, but in discussions on coaching and managerial opportunities for black coaches also highlighted how far it has go. Initiatives like the Paul Canoville Foundation however do show how football can be a force for bringing people together. A very thought-provoking, as well as entertaining evening.’
For more information on the Paul Canoville Foundation please visit www.PaulCanovilleFoundation.com. You can also follow the Foundation via Twitter using @CanovilleFDN.
Written by Gary Stannett MBE
Edited by Andrew Thomson
All images courtesy of Mark Westwood Photography