THE new season kicked off this month with a triumphant start for newly-promoted Churchdown Panthers, who romped home with a 4-1 victory against AC Olympia in the team’s first match as a Division 1 side.

Ahead of the 3pm kickoff at Dowty Sports and Social Club on Saturday, the team ran on to the pitch decked out in their brand-new strip, courtesy of their sponsor Roxon Electrical.
Celebrating its most prosperous year since its formation as a limited company in 2007, the firm of Gloucester-based solar panel specialists and electrical contractors wanted to share in its success by supporting a sports team in the community.
Since moving to Innsworth Technology Park in 2012, Roxon’s managing director Chris James has formed a firm friendship with Panthers manager Kev Taylor, who works for ITP. 
“We have had a fantastic 12 months in which we have seen a significant rise in the number of domestic and commercial solar PV installations being carried out,” said Chris.
“We wanted to share in our success by helping out a local sports team or community group.
“Kev mentioned the Panthers were looking for a new sponsor, so we were more than delighted to step in.”
Last year’s Division 2 winners, Churchdown Panthers have come up through the youth football ranks from division six to first division in Cheltenham League 1.
Manager Kev Taylor said: “I’m thrilled with this fantastic start to the season. It’s the Panthers’ first match in Division 1, so I’m really, really pleased with the amount of effort, training and hard work the team have put in. They performed fantastically. I couldn’t ask for more.
“It’s going to be a challenging season, but if they carry on playing at this standard, hopefully we’ll end it on a high.”
He continued: “Spectators on Saturday may have noticed the strip only bears the numbers from 20 upwards.
“This might seem a bit strange, but there’s a simple explanation. I wanted to avoid any of the usual prima donna behaviour and arguments over who gets to wear the most popular numbers – and this worked a treat,” he laughed.
Speaking of the team’s new sponsor he added: “I’d like to say thanks to Chris and the Roxon team for sponsoring us, and for this fantastic new strip. The boys are chuffed to bits with it.
“Chris’s sons Lloyd and Lewis used to play for our rivals, Elmbridge. But since Roxon moved into their premises at Innsworth Technology Park I have got to know Chris well.


“Roxon has carried out several fantastic solar PV installations at ITP and its sister site, Meteor Business Park at Staverton – and there are further installations in the pipeline.”