A NEW Facebook Group has been launched by football and cricket coach, Jon Goldsmith — a hub for sharing IW football and cricket photos and memorabilia from over the years.
The group was set up on March 6, and has already garnered more than 1,000 members — fast becoming the place to go for sharing and enjoying IW football and cricket memories.
Jon played Island representative football at U15 level, and cricket at Under 14, 15, 20 and senior level.
He started his footballing days with Barton, enjoying his first adult game at 13 years of age, before playing for Yarmouth for a year.
He went on to play for Whitecroft and Barton, and still enjoys watching them to this day.
He also played Sunday football for The Castle, Shide and Newport Buzzards.
He started playing cricket for Medina Cricket Club in 1981, and was lucky enough to play in the Whitbread Senior Cup final against Shanklin as a 14-year-old.
He then played for Whitecroft Cricket Club for close to ten years, before joining a club in Cowes in 1992 where he stayed until June, 2019.
Jon’s a Level 1 Football Association coach, and a Level 3 coach in cricket.
He runs his own cricket coaching business — Centurion Cricket Coaching — and has coached Island cricket representative sides from U10s to U19s.
“I was a community cricket coach for the IW Cricket Board, working for Sport England, overseeing women and girls cricket for more than three years,” said Jon.
“I coached and managed the U13 and U15 girls Island squads and was very pleased we won three games against ‘full’ counties — something I am very proud of.
“I’ve coached cricket and football since 2000, and I’m currently a coach for the junior section at Cowes Cricket Club.
“The reason I set up the group was my passion for football and cricket.
“I have always been interested in both, and my earliest memories relate to watching or playing.
“I’m on a few other Facebook groups that relate to Island heritage and history, and thought that it would be great to have a group for my two favourite sporting pastimes.
“The idea of doing something for charity has been put forward by Justin Pinder and Gareth Williams.
“There is lots of interest to hold a match or matches of both football and cricket, and have a fundraising get together, maybe a dinner and dance with an auction, raising money for the NHS.
“The response to the group has been amazing with great photos, stories and lots of super memories.
“The best thing for me has been that everyone joining has a love for Island football or cricket or both.
“I have also re-connected with old friends and opponents.”
To join, visit the Isle of Wight Football and Cricket Nostalgia Facebook group.