070323 International Womens Day

International Women's Day 2023

Celebrating a true trailblazer in Cheshire – Kath Burgess

To mark International Women’s Day 2023, we are proud to share the story of one of our most inspirational women in grassroots football in Cheshire. 

Kath Burgess is a grassroots legend and has made an incredible difference to the Women & Girls’ game for many years.

070323 Kath Burgess - March 2023

Our Women & Girls Football Development Officer, Steph Knott, writes…

"Kath got involved in girls football in the Mid 90’s when her eldest daughter started playing. Kath and her husband started a girls’ team, ‘Hartford Moss Farm Girls’. It was whilst at matches Kath began to recognise the need for more referees & decided to get qualified so she could ref their own games. But Kath being the enthusiastic person she is, ended up officiating in boys’ football too. Kath still officiates at the girl’s league fixtures but has now become a great mentor to support new young budding male & female referees to ensure they develop, progress and importantly, stay in the game.

"Kath founded the Cheshire Girls league in 1996, which started out with 6 teams at Under 15. Thanks to the hard work and dedication of Kath and other colleagues, the league has grown massively since then and incredibly has nearly 5,000 female players taking part each week across the whole County.

"Kath now sits on the Girls’ League Executive Committee, wearing a variety of hats to support not only the league and its development, but football in general. Kath is also a valued member on the Cheshire FA Inclusion Advisory Group and a representative on the Mid Cheshire District FA.

"Her passion & enthusiasm for the game rubs off on others and her incredible wealth of knowledge of running football has made her a rock that so many people have depended upon. 

"Kath's drive to provide opportunities for girls to play football is admirable and her contribution to the development of referees across Cheshire is immeasurable. Kath has helped organise various competitions that the Cheshire Girls Football League have run over the years and has been instrumental to the continued sustainability and growth of the league - and of girls football in general. 

"She has supported many women’s competitions with her help in appointing officials and officiating herself. She never misses an opportunity to promote female football and works closely with the County FA assisting in setting up different activities, and even actively taking part in the age-appropriate sessions with the youngsters, becoming the 'snow monster' on a few occasions, thus helping to create the next generation of players and maybe the next Chloe Kelly.  

"Kath has been a driving force behind the league for the past 27 years and has fought many battles behind the scenes to ensure that girls have equal opportunities and a quality provision to continue their passions to play the beautiful game. 

"She is an outstanding person and her contribution as a volunteer to the game has affected the lives of so many people – A True TRAILBLAZER!

On behalf of everyone at Cheshire FA, Kath, thank you.