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Level Playing Field Award to the Club Employee of the Year

Level Playing Field thinks it is important that people are recognised for the great work they do, often working behind the scenes and without seeking the limelight. Level Playing Field aims to celebrate the work of these individuals with our awards.

The Level Playing Field ‘Club Employee of the Year Award’ is awarded to an employee who has been pro-active in identifying and solving issues for disabled supporters. To someone who makes a difference in improving access and increasing opportunities for disabled supporters.

This year Level Playing Field is delighted to award the Level Playing Field Club Employee of the Year to Birmingham City’s John Starkey.

When John first started working as Birmingham City’s Disability Liaison Officer and Secretary of the Birmingham City Disabled Supporters Club there were 6 members and today the membership is over 90. John works tirelessly for Birmingham City’s disabled supporters and it’s safe to say that many disabled fans would not attend a football match if it wasn’t for John. In addition he also offers support and even arranges days out for everyone.

John is not someone who courts a lot of attention or makes a fuss and he quietly goes about his business. He often goes unnoticed and doesn’t always get the recognition he deserves.

But now, after years of dedicating his life – not only to Birmingham City but to making sure so many disabled people can come to St Andrews or travel around the country to away matches and enjoy football we are delighted to award the Level Playing Field ‘Club Employee of the Year Award’ to John Starkey.


John was surprised to be called onto the pitch at half time during the Birmingham City v Wigan game on Tuesday 29th March and receive his award from LPF Ambassador, June Wratten accompanied by Ruth Hopkins, LPF Access & Development Manager to thunderous applause and cheers from the 21,000 crowd.