Community Club Secretary and Co-manager of the Saturday Amateurs team, James Drummond, will this week represent the club when he visits Holland as part of an S.F.A. South East Region organised trip.

This trip will see representatives look at three key learning outcomes with a view to learning from Dutch counterparts and bringing home some good examples of how to grow and develop clubs. These outcomes are:

1.    Community Projects (initiatives to develop clubs in the community;

2.    Football development (player development and inclusion initiatives)

3.    Coach and volunteer development (initiatives that focus on recruiting, developing and rewarding volunteers)

Based in Utrecht the travelling party will have a full itinerary of study visits to undertake as they visit a range of various clubs and speak to individuals whilst there. Over the course of the week-long trip James will visit Dutch premier league clubs FC Utrecht, Vitesse Arnhem and AZ Alkmaar as well as 5 Community Clubs around the country to get an insight into the Dutch model of how these clubs operate, and what helps produce so many talented players that many of us are used to seeing on our TV screens every weekend.

Regarding the trip, James said, “It’s a great honour and fantastic opportunity for me to be representing Bathgate on this trip and I really hope to see and learn some fantastic things on the trip which I hope to share with everyone in our club on my return home. It will be a full-on week of visiting various clubs in Holland and interesting to see what happens at the community clubs in particular and how they operate – some of these clubs have over 2000 members so the organisation and commitment volunteers must have to run clubs of this size will be really interesting to learn more about. I hope to be able to bring back some best practice in relation to a number of areas, player pathway and merging of teams an area in which will be particularly keen to report back to our newly formed Coaching Sub Group.”

It won’t all be hard work however, as the group will attend the Holland v Latvia match on the Sunday evening and also set time aside to be able to watch TV coverage of Scotland’s two big international matches coming up against the Republic of Ireland and England.

All at the club wish James well on the trip, and if anybody has anything that they would specifically like James to learn more about then please drop James an email at

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