SDDE Group Partnership

SDDE Smith Group Partners with North Riding FA

From fines to funding: how grassroots football secured its latest partnership.

North Riding County FA is excited to announce our partnership with The SDDE Smith Group for the upcoming 2023/24 season!

Football fans up and down the country will likely have seen The SDDE Smith Group of companies, including Host & Stay and WOODSmith Construction, advertised on shirts and hoardings in several grounds throughout the English Leagues, and we are delighted that they have chosen to support the grassroots game too.

Gary Wood, COO of The SDDE Smith Group and MD of WOODSmith Construction, played Northern League football for several clubs over 15 years, winning the North Riding Senior Cup with Guisborough Town beating local rivals Marske United being one of his favourite days. While Gary no longer plays (referees can breathe a sigh of relief!), his love for football, especially local football, remains strong to this day. So, when the opportunity to partner with the North Riding County FA came up, Gary knew he and The SDDE Smith Group had to get involved.

“Myself and Dale Smith (CEO of The SDDE Smith Group) have been involved in football from a young age, we understand first hand the profound impact it can have on individuals and communities. Football matters deeply in Teesside and North Yorkshire, where it serves as a deep source of pride for the region.” 

Gary continues: “Back in the day, my wallet suffered the consequences of my on-field behaviour; although I would say my consistent fines and bookings did help fund the North Riding! But since leaving the pitch I had to find new ways to support the county, and sponsorship was the answer. Being able to support the North Riding County FA allows The SDDE Smith Group to contribute to the growth of grassroots football in an area where it truly matters. Our goal,  through the sponsorship of the North Riding FA County Cup Competitions and the Referee CORE program, is to create a safe and thriving football environment for players, referees, and everyone involved to enjoy.” 

The partnership will see The SDDE Smith Group taking naming rights for the North Riding FA County Cup competitions. The County Cup competitions will be re-named to include the groups' portfolio of companies, with WOODSmith Construction mainly sponsoring the men’s competitions, including the prestigious North Riding Senior Cup. Host and Stay, Grey-Smith Legal and Styled Interior Design will share the sponsorship of the junior and Women’s North Riding Cup competitions.

And, for the entirety of the 2023-24 season, The SDDE Smith will be the principal partner of the CORE Referee Programme. After playing throughout the footballing pyramid, both Dale Smith and Gary Wood understand that without the training and development of new referees, the game we know, and love wouldn't be able to be officiated by qualified referees. There are over 22,000 participants currently playing football in some capacity within the county. Without the development of new referees, we would be unable to fulfil the demand across female, male and disability pathways to ensure games are played in a safe and controlled environment.

Founded in 2017, The SDDE Smith Group has established itself as a company committed to its employees, clients, and the local communities it serves. Driven by a genuine passion for property, and their end-to-end solutions for property owners, the Group has thrived, expanding to include 14 companies and employing over 300 individuals throughout the North East and North Yorkshire region.

Steven Wade, Chief Executive at North Riding County FA, says: “North Riding FA is delighted to announce this partnership with The SDDE Smith Group, a company with a track record of already supporting football across the country.”

“Dale and Gary have played the game themselves and therefore understand the power of grassroots football to improve the lives of those involved. We believe that the values of the two companies are very much aligned, with both being passionate about supporting communities and widening opportunities for local people.”

“The support that The SDDE group are providing will allow us to continue to invest in the development of the game across Teesside and North Yorkshire during the 2023/24 season, supporting the development of our referee workforce and providing the very best experience for those adult and youth teams involved in our prestigious county cup competitions.”

The partnership with The SDDE Smith Group is assisting us in our quest to ensure that football remains accessible to all, ensuring that individuals have the chance to have fun, showcase their abilities, and even pursue professional careers in the sport.

We’re excited to kick off the season with The SDDE Smith Group, building stronger, more united communities, where the impact of football reaches far beyond the boundaries of the pitch!

SDDE Group Partnership