CAFE are delighted to announce that two disabled supporters associations, the Heart of Midlothian Disabled Supporters Club of Heart of Midlothian FC and the Belgian disabled supporters association RSCA Purple Wheels of RSC Anderlecht FC, are going to twin in the near future.

Geert Thomas, the president of the RSCA Purple Wheels DSA:  “The concept of twinning offers a great opportunity to create networks and to share good practice, whether at a local, national or international level. Referring to this international level: it has always been one of RSCA Purple Wheels’ main objectives to twin with a DSA from a foreign football club. Hearts are a big club in Scotland as they are currently playing in 4th position in the Scottish Premier League.”

“It is very encouraging to see that the CAFE’s Western European Development Officer and also the Secretary of the Heart of Midlothian Disabled Supporters Club, Keith Ferguson, and some of his club members are looking forward to meet us. RSCA Purple wheels DSA will be represented by a delegation of 3 persons: 2 manual wheelchair users, Ruben Gregoor and I, and a P.A. Peter Thijs. We will arrive in Edinburgh on Friday evening, the 30th of March and we will have a 2 nights stay at a comfortable, accessible hotel.”

“We plan several possible activities throughout the weekend. One of the highlights will definitely be our visit to the Tynecastle Stadium in order to attend the match Hearts vs Aberdeen, which is scheduled on Saturday afternoon.”

“Another great idea would be to arrange a meeting with the Hearts Disabled Supporters Club. That way we could discuss some important inaccessibility issues which are often experienced in football stadiums by disabled people: no accessible entrances for wheelchair users, poor parking facilities, a lack of audio-described commentary systems for Partially Sighted and Blind Supporters etc.”

“Finally, we could decide to have a nice meal at a local restaurant or even to do some sightseeing. I am certain that CAFE will keep everyone informed about this upcoming event on their website!”

Geert Thomas

Published 22/02/2012