Press & Media

If you are interested in joining the CFA please contact:

Media enquiries:
Chris Green Media
T – 01905 754336


For immediate release

The First Ever Peace Pitch in the Royal Borough of Greenwich

October 2023

Royal Artillery Barracks, Woolwich in partnership with Charlton Athletic Community Trust, University of Greenwich and Charlton Athletic Museum have announced to twin the Royal Artillery’s Sports Pavillion football pitches with the Peace Pitch, Peace Village, Flanders Peace Field, Mesen, Belgium, site of the First World War, 1914, Christmas Truces.  The International Peace Fields Project organized by The Children’s Football Alliance (CFA) currently has 68 peace pitches in 6 continents.  The peace pitches commemorate all wars and celebrate peace through play.  The Greenwich Peace Pitch will kick-start the Meridian Line Peace Field Projects and launch a branch for The Commonwealth Children’s Football Alliance. 

The Childrens Football Alliance (CFA) are the custodians of the International Children’s Football Alliance.  Their mission statement: Protect Childhood Through Play.  Their peace education through play projects have brought children together for over 12 years.

The unique Peace Field Project Peace Pitch has been inspired by Herbert ‘Nobby’ Nightingale born in Silvertown in 1888 and later moved south of the Thames to Charlton where his family resided in a house at Mount Street. A keen footballer, whilst working at Seimens telegraph works, Nightingale joined Charlton Athletic FC as well as playing for Woolwich Polytechnic, now the University of Greenwich, and he was in the team when Charlton played in their first ever FA Cup match against Dartford in 1915. Nightingale joined up serving as a gunner with the Royal Garrison Artillery at Woolwich, arriving in France on 6 June 1915. His unit were positioned south of Ypres, and on the night of the 11-12 January 1916, they were fired upon during the night, and Nightingale was killed. Charlton’s former player was buried not far from where he fell, behind the lines in R.E. Farm Cemetery, near Messines.

The twinning event 10am Thursday 19th October, Royal Artillery Barracks, Woolwich, Sports Pitches, will be attended by special guests and dignitaries, local primary Schools in the borough will be the first to play on the peace pitch.   

Major Scott Sloan, Royal Artillery, said, The Royal Regiment of Artillery was formed in Woolwich in 1716 and has had a presence in the town ever since. The Royal Artillery has been involved in every campaign in which the British Army has served, and in both the First and Second World Wars grew to over one million personnel. The current Barracks has existed since 1776 and remains the home of both the King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery and 100 (Yeomanry) Regiment Royal Artillery. Today, the sports pitches and Woolwich Common continue to be used for military training, sports and community events, and were a central part of the shooting events for the London 2012 Olympics.’

‘We are incredibly proud to be able to twin our sports pitches with the Peace Pitch at Flanders as part of the Peace Field Project. This twinning will provide another opportunity for remembrance of those who served in the Royal Artillery, or veterans from Woolwich and Charlton, many of whom making the ultimate sacrifice in the defence of our Nation and values.’

Ernie Brennan, Children’s Football Alliance, CEO, said, ‘There are rightfully many memorials to wars and unfortunately very few memorials to peace.  The first ever peace pitch in South London is testament to Herbert Nightingale, all the parents, grandparents and families across the borough that value the power of sport to bring communities together.’ 

Mayor of Greenwich, Cllr Dominic Mbang, said, ‘I am delighted to attend the Unveiling of the Peace Field Project Plaque on Thursday 19th October 2023 at 10.00am, at the Royal Artillery Sports Pavilion.

Charlton Athletic in the Community, said, ‘Charlton Athletic’s football in the community link with the Royal Artillery is perfectly connected through Herbert Nightingale.  We are proud to honor a local man and facilitate children in the community playing football games on the first ever peace pitch in South London’.

University of Greenwich, Gavin Rand, said, ‘On behalf of the University of Greenwich I am very pleased to be involved in this important commemorative event’.

Charlton Athletic Museum Trustee Clive Harris said, ‘The Charlton Athletic Museum are delighted to be involved in this project as it highlights the long lasting links between Charlton Athletic FC and the military history of Woolwich and Charlton.  The inscription on the grave of Herbert Nightingale reads “Let those that come after see, that this name is not forgotten”; the Peace Pitch initiative helps to do just that.’

David Ramzan, Children’s Football Alliance Project Manager, said, ‘As the CFA Peace Field Project Manager it was an honor to take on the role of twinning of the Royal Artillery pitch, especially as I was born in the borough, have supported Charlton Athletic since 1964, worked as a coach at the Charlton Athletic Community Trust, and have donated various items of football memorabilia from my collection to the Charlton Athletic Museum. While working on one of the Peace Field Twinning projects in Mesen, Belgium, site of the 1914 First World War Christmas Truces, I took the opportunity to visit the War Grave of Charlton’s former player, Herbert Nightingale, who we are remembering during the pitch twinning ceremony, and it was through a lot of hard work and research by the trustees of the Charlton Museum that Herbert, or Nobby as he was known, was discovered as one of three men associated with the club who lost their lives through war. The Royal Artillery Peace Field Pitch Twinning project brings not only the Woolwich Royal Artillery, Charlton Athletic Football Club, club sponsors the University of Greenwich and the Charlton Museum together in a valuable cause, it also brings together the wider community to remember a man that once loved this community.’

Notes to editors

For more details, contact The CFA:  David Ramzan on +00 44 (0)7860 713619 or email Alternatively, call Ernie Brennan on +00 44 (0)7813 082584 or email Ernie 

The Children’s Football Alliance was established in 2008 to protect childhood through play.






SUNDAY 22 MAY 2022

kick off 4.30pm





Down Load Press Release 

Press release
For immediate release

Football Makes Our Shared History receives Lottery boost

Press release
For immediate release

Football Makes Our Shared History Receives Lottery Boost

ORGANISERS of a unique sports heritage initiative have brought together Northern Ireland’s Football Association, Gaelic Athletic Association, Ulster Rugby, Ulster Hockey, Peace Players and many more children’s sports to celebrate shared history.

The National Children’s Football Alliance (NCFA) has been awarded a £67,500 grant from The National Lottery Heritage Fund towards its Football Makes Our Shared History project, which will culminate in an exhibition of children’s research on how sports contribute to our shared history and the creation of peace pitches by twinning designated areas of play with Flanders Peace Field in Belgium, site of the First World War Christmas Truces in 1914.

Thanks to the National Lottery Heritage Fund grant, people of all ages across Northern Ireland, including schoolchildren, will research the impact of sport on local communities and how it has helped to shape a contemporary society.

Football Makes Our Shared Heritage will be launched at Queen’s University, Belfast on Thursday, February 17.

Karl Oakes, head of sport at Queen’s, said: “We’re delighted that funding has been made available to enable people in Northern Ireland to learn more about how about sport has contributed to their shared history.

“Over the last 50 years across our indoor and outdoor facilities and through sport development programmes, we’ve seen that sport is a fantastic way of bringing students from different backgrounds together. Our current students have a choice of more than 50 sports clubs to join with participation and performance sporting opportunities.

“If we needed a reminder of the benefits that sport gives us in terms of health and wellbeing, social interaction and uniting communities, the pandemic has certainly given us that.”

Olive Hill, NI Committee Member, The National Lottery Heritage Fund said:

“Thanks to National Lottery players more than £30 million raised each week goes to good causes across the UK. This project gives participants the opportunity to not only learn about their sporting heritage, but to become truly involved in it by exploring sport in an inclusive and engaging way. We know that giving people a chance to have a closer understanding and relationship to their heritage reaps many benefits, and is something we are proud to fund.”

All research and oral histories collated during the project will be included on the National Children’s Football Alliance website: and a short documentary film will be screened at Queen’s University, Belfast later this year.

National Children’s Football Alliance, projects director, Paul Cooper added: “Football Makes Our Shared History is the essence of play. We are delighted that that we’ve received this support thanks to National Lottery players and that Northern Ireland’s great sporting associations value community games of all disciplines. We look forward to seeing the children’s work and how they connect to their games with grandparents, relatives and friends. This is about the historic nature of play and how it continues to shape our landscape.”

Chris Wright, Irish FA Foundation community relations officer, said: “Our work is centred around Football for All and we are pleased to support such an inclusive project as this one.”

Brian McAvoy, CEO of Ulster Gaelic Athletic Association, said: “‘We place a great emphasis on outreach and using sport to bring people together from different social, religious and ethnic backgrounds. We look forward to supporting this project.”

Chris Webster, Ulster Rugby’s head of rugby development, said: “We look forward to celebrating how rugby brings us together.”

Tim Wareing, Director & Head Coach, TW Sports / TW Braga, said: “Our boys and girls are looking forward to participating in Football Makes Our Shared History at Ulster University, Coleraine”

The sports heritage project will leave a legacy in each of the six counties. One of the project’s aims is to have a peace pitch in each county twinned with Flanders Peace Field.

On April 24, 2018, the first peace pitch in Northern Ireland was unveiled. The George Best Peace Pitch is located on Cregagh Green, Belfast, where Best fell in love with the game. There are also peace pitches at: Enniskillen Royal Grammar School, (rugby pitch), Ashfield Girls School, Belfast (netball pitch) and North Coast Integrated College, Coleraine,(football pitch).

Schools, clubs, groups and teams are invited to take part in Football Makes Our Shared History. To find out more, please visit

Notes to editors

For more details, contact Ernie Brennan on 07813 082584 or email Alternatively, call Paul Cooper on 07875 283093 or email

The National Children’s Football Alliance was established in 2008 to enhance children’s development through play. The NCFA seek to protect childhood through play.

About The National Lottery Heritage Fund

Using money raised by The National Lottery, The National Lottery Heritage Fund inspires, leads and resources the UK’s heritage to create positive and lasting change for people and communities, now and in the future.

Follow @HeritageFundNI on Twitter and @HeritageFundNorthernIreland on Facebook and use the hashtag #NationalLotteryHeritageFund

Since The National Lottery began in 1994, National Lottery players have raised over £43 billion for projects and more than 635,000 grants have been awarded across the UK.



PRESS RELEASE 03/03/2020 Click here to download PRESS RELEASE

PRESS RELEASE 08/03/2019