Taking Time Out

After a fast and furious 12 months – and far too many mince pies over the Christmas break! – Host Your Kit has decided to take time out at the start of 2015 to get back to full fitness for the year ahead.

Rather than giving kits away every month this year we’re going to be running specific competitions focused around key sporting events – the first of which is a spot competition ahead of this weekend’s BBL Cup Final – so make sure you continue to follow us on Facebook  and Twitter so you don’t miss out.

Host Your Kit is proud to have helped scores of football, basketball, hockey and rugby teams since it was launched three years ago. Our campaign has spanned an incredible time in sport in the United Kingdom which played host to the best ever Olympics and Commonwealth Games.

Our first winners back in March 2012 were an U11 girls’ football team from Perth in Scotland called Jeanfield Swift while Blackburn Northern Boys U15s hockey team were our final winners of 2014. In between, almost 200 teams and individuals have been rewarded with FREE high quality sports kits.

We would like to say a few words of thanks to everyone who has helped make Host Your Kit a success so far.

From football we’ve been supported by Scotland internationals Charlie Mulgrew and Emma Black (n´ee Fernon) plus Rangers’ Robbie Crawford.

From basketball our ambassadors have been GB and Glasgow Rocks star Kieron Achara (see our fab giveaway from Kieron ahead of the BBL Cup Final!) plus Scotland stars Clair Paxton and Steven Ross.

Sports organisations basketballscotland, Greater Sport Manchester and Youth Football Scotland have spread the word to youth sports teams right across the UK.  And a big thanks also to our young ambassadors who willingly allowed us to plaster their photos over our promotional material.

Host Your Kit is organised by cloud computing company iomart which is a proud supporter of grassroots sport and an enthusiastic promoter of tech as a career for young men and women.

So as 2015 gets underway, enjoy all the sport you play this year, shake hands with your opponents and show respect to all the parents, coaches and officials without whom your sport wouldn’t take place.

As far as the team at Host Your Kit is concerned, the final whistle hasn’t been blown. So grab your half time oranges, keep in touch via social media and we’ll see you with more kit giveaways and spot competitions soon!

Yours in sport,

HYK Gaffer

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Dudley Town U15 Footballers Kick Off New Season In Style

Dudley Town U15s football team has made a great start to the new season after winning Host Your Kit.
Their new red Adidas kit seems to have brought them luck as they’ve won the first two matches of the new season to go top of Division One of the Stourbridge & District Youth Football League.

Denis Robinson, coach of Dudley Town U15s, said: “The new kit from iomart is fantastic and it’s given the team a real boost. They finished in sixth place last season so to win their first two games on the trot has given them real confidence for this one.”
Phil Worms, Chief Marketing Officer for iomart, said: “Our judges were very impressed with the commitment of everyone associated with Dudley Town and the fact that they help local schools out by giving them their old kits. We wish them all the best for the season ahead and are delighted that the new kit is already bringing them some early success!”

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Ardrossan Hockey Club Win First Ever Match in iomart Kit

Huge congratulations to Ardrossan Hockey Club’s brand new second eleven who won their first ever match at the weekend wearing a brand new iomart sponsored kit.

Ardrossan won the Grays hockey kit after impressing the Host Your Kit judges with the work they’ve been doing in the local community in Ayrshire in Scotland to encourage more teenage girls to take up the sport. The club now has more than 40 young players training each week and as a result it’s been able to form a brand new 2nd XI.

This weekend the girls played their first match in the West of Scotland District League Division 4 and won 4-1!

Coach Winnie Dorrian said: “Thanks to the hard work we’ve done in the community and the support of iomart we now have two teams in action this season. Hockey is a great game and after being showcased at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow this summer we really hope we can keep the legacy going by getting even more teenage girls playing.”

And they’re not the first team from Ayrshire to win Host Your Kit. Last year Ayr Storm U14 basketball team won themselves a brand new Spalding strip after impressing our judges.

The new strip was delivered by our Host Your Kit retail partner Gilmour Sports.

Well done girls and keep up your winning start!

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Host Your Kit Winners August 2014

What a summer of sport we’ve had! Straight from the World Cup, onto the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow and now the start of the footy season – The Gaffer has truly been in seventh heaven as well as needing  about three remote controls to keep up with all the action on the telly. Fortunately I did manage to rouse myself from the sofa and gather our judges to choose the August winners for Host Your Kit.

This month we have 5 fabulous football teams who will all be wearing a brand new adidas kit in the near future.

The company behind Host Your Kit, cloud company iomart, is headquartered in Glasgow and I’m delighted to say our first winner is from the city. According to the parent who sent in their entry, Broomhill Boys U12s are “one of the hardest working teams I’ve seen. They win graciously and lose humbly.” That’s pretty high praise boys! We hope you got swept up in the amazing atmosphere of the Games and wish you all the best for the new season. ‘Gie it laldy’ and wear your new kit with pride.

From Scotland to the north of England and well done to St Joseph’s FC Under 11s in Accrington who have their manager Matthew to thank. He sent through three photos showing how old and worn their playing kit was – to be honest it looked more like the kit that the original Accrington Stanley players would have worn back in 1891!! Thanks to Matthew they’re going to be one of the best-dressed teams from now on.

A proud mum sent in what proved to be a winning entry on behalf of Chesterfield Ladies Under 11s.  The girls play in the Sheffield and Hallamshire League and after a difficult start they kept their heads up and had a storming finish to their season, winning their last seven matches to finish in fourth place.  Well done girls, a lovely new kit is coming your way.

Congrats also to Feniscowles and Pleasington Girls Football Club from Burnley, or the Fenny Reccers as they’re better known.  The club only got going last summer and now has over 40 girls playing football every week.  Their coach Dave says they’ve had a fantastic first season and he pointed to “all the hard work and positive attitudes from players, parents and coaches” that has helped encourage so many young girls join the club. The Under13s have passed their kit down to the Under 12s and as a result need a new one, so Host Your Kit is delighted to award them a brand new adidas kit to reward their kindness and the commitment of everyone involved with the club.

Over to Wales for our final footy winners this month – Westend Boys U12s from Swansea.  They have applied almost every month this year and have never once complained when another team’s entry has won the judges’ vote in front of theirs. Well this time round Westend you scored!

Our basketball winners for August are Chadderton Tigers Boys Under 10s. They are a newly formed junior basketball team who train and play at the Sport For All Centre in Failsworth near Oldham in Greater Manchester where they’ve gained some extra insight to the game with coaching sessions by none other than the Manchester Giants’ Paul Cantwell. We reckon they’re going to be a fantastic team and we can’t wait to see them fully kitted out in a new Spalding strip and slam dunking their way to victory.

And last but by no means least we have Troon Ladies Hockey Club U16s. Their coach explained how they have spent the last three years helping to encourage the game in the local community as part of the Scottish Hockey Union’s development programme.  Fantastic work girls – a brand new Grays kit is your reward.

To all our winners this month we’d like to dedicate the phrase that came to define the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games – you’re ‘Pure Dead Brilliant!’

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Host Yor Kit Winners July 2014

Félicitations – Vous Ȇtes Les Champions!

Bonjour mes amis. Avez vous gagner un kit de sport? Ok, let’s stop right there – my French is probably as irritating to you as the USA’s impression of the France kit was to its fans during the World Cup! Despite it being Bastille Day the other day, I’m definitely no Arsène Wenger so on we go in English.

So to the big question, have you stormed your way to victory in our July Host Your Kit competition? Here are the teams who impressed our judges with their entries and who will be taking delivery of brand new sports kits over the summer.

The football teams who’ve won themselves a brand new adidas strip are: Adlington Hawks Boys U11s from Chorley – the wife of one of the coaches wrote in to tell us what a ‘fantastic bunch of kids’ and how hard they work; Albrighton Junior Girls U12s from Shropshire who, despite their kit clashing with several other teams’ still saw clearly enough to win their league; Burntwood Dragons Greens FC U15s from Burntwood in Staffordshire, who also have a clash of kits and can’t raise money for a new one; Harrow Hill Girls from Gloucestershire who have got an U16s team together for the first time and need a decent kit to boost their confidence;  Morton Girls U11s from Greenock whose club have grown their player base from 10 to 61 in just six months; Newport United Girls U14s whose coach says they deserve a confidence boost after wearing hand-me-down kit for the past two seasons ; and Silverdale Lions Boys U11s, from Walsall, who have held a number of events to try to raise money for a new kit but still haven’t reached their target – we’re glad to help you out guys!

And we have other sports kit to give out too….

Our basketball winners this month are Copley Boys U10s from Stalybridge. Copley basketball club is due to re-launch itself to its local community this autumn and is desperately in need of new kits. A fabulous Spalding kit is now on its way from HYK!

And our rugby winners, who will receive a brand new Gilbert strip, are Hunslet Parkside Boys U12s from Leeds.  The team’s coach says the club has been teaching children from the local area to play rugby for over 35 years and winning a new kit would be ‘amazing for the kids and the parents.’

Congratulations to one and all. Don’t forget to keep those entries coming in as we give away brand new sports kits every month. Bonne Chance!

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Super Mario – Super Team!

As you know Host Your Kit is all about celebrating teamwork so we’re delighted that it was Germany who lifted the World Cup. What a night for Mario Götze, his teammates and coach Joachim Löw in the Maracanã!

We have 15 football teams who also have reason to celebrate – they won brand new adidas kits in our special HYK World Cup competition.

Our World Cup boys’ winners were: Chatteris Town Youth U13s from Cambridge who played the whole season with just 10 boys in their squad and still managed to clinch promotion;  Coleshill Town U16s whose coach told us how a new kit would keep a bunch of ‘stroppy’ teenagers continue to play in the top division of the biggest youth league in the Midlands; Leith Athletic 2000′s U14s who highlighted the hard work and dedication of a fantastic band of volunteers;  Oban Saints YFC U16s, in the Scottish Highlands, where much of the funding has to support the huge distances the team has to travel to play;  Polbeth United U16s in West Lothian, whose coach wanted to say thank you for the support the players gave her as she was recovering from a serious illness; Saron Juniors Boys U11s whose club has just celebrated its 21st season of bringing football to the Welsh community of Carmarthenshire; Trowell FC Boys U16s in Nottingham who put money that would have gone towards a new kit towards setting up a soccer school; Upton United Boys U13s near Pontefract  who were on the point of calling it a day until they were able to merge two teams to keep going; Valley Juniors Boys Under 13s from Rotherham; Wapping Youth U13s from Tower Hamlets, London, who lifted several trophies in their first full season and Wilberfoss Mavericks Junior FC U15s who are busy raising money for floodlights so they can train outdoors through the winter.


We are delighted to continue to support women’s football – did you know that more girls are now playing football in the US than any other sport?

Our World Cup girls’ winners were: Chester And District U14s and Wishaw Wycombe Wanderers U11s who are part of recently established clubs which already have more than 150 young girls playing football every week; Port Glasgow Community Sports Club U11s who are fundraising to support one of their players who has been diagnosed with cancer; and Warsash Wasps U15s whose entry was written by one of the players and said simply “As we are girls we are not seen as equal to the boys but we want to prove people wrong.” Well said Warsash Wasps, football is for everyone!

Congratulations to all our World Cup Winners – we hope your new kits help you play like Muller, Hummels & Co in the coming season!

Plus, belated congrats go to our winners from May. I was so busy thinking up our World Cup plans that I forgot to announce them here! So well done to our football winners: AC Oxgangs Boys U12s from Edinburgh; Andover New Street Girls U15s from Hampshire; Glasgow East BC U15s from Scotland; Kitto Allsaints Boys U11s of Plymouth; Lea Valley FC Boys U 11s from Enfield, London; ON Cheneks Girls U12s from Northampton and Upton JFC Boys U11s from Chester.

Brand new hockey kits went to Old Sihilians Girls U15s from Solihull and Folkestone Optimists Girls U14s. Our basketball winners were Arrows Boys U12s from Dronfield in Derbyshire and Team Tameside Boys U16s from Dukinfield, Greater Manchester; and our rugby winners were Walney Central Boys U12s from Barrow-in-Furness.

News of our July winners will be announced this Wednesday so keep those fingers crossed…..

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Abingdon Town U10s Get Suited and Booted with Host Your Kit

Abingdon Town U10 Boys FC swopped their football boots for wellies – only briefly! – to celebrate winning Host Your Kit.

The team train and play at Abingdon Town FC’s ground which spent weeks less than two feet of water after the River Thames flooded back in January. The whole club suffered financially because of cancelled games and social functions.

Their plea for a new kit resounded with our judges and they were one of the teams awarded a brand new adidas kit in the March round of HYK.

Craig Cantwell, Abingdon Town U10s coach, said: “The flooding put the future of the club at risk so we put all our team funds towards the day-to-day running to help it survive. As a result we couldn’t afford a new kit for the boys so we entered Host Your Kit. It’s fantastic to have won. The new kit looks great and the boys will wear it with real pride.”

The team posed for a fun photo with their wellies on to celebrate winning the kit which they’ve been wearing at the tournaments they’re playing this summer.

Phil Worms, Director of Marketing for iomart, said: “The weather had a massive impact on the whole football club at Abingdon so we’re delighted to be able to help in some small way. We wish the team the very best of luck – they’ll need to swop those wellies for boots though!”

Abingdon Town U10 Boys FC swopped their football boots for wellies – only briefly! – to celebrate winning Host Your Kit.

The team train and play at Abingdon Town FC’s ground which spent weeks less than two feet of water after the River Thames flooded back in January. The whole club suffered financially because of cancelled games and social functions.

Their plea for a new kit resounded with our judges and they were one of the teams awarded a brand new adidas kit in the March round of HYK.

Craig Cantwell, Abingdon Town U10s coach, said: “The flooding put the future of the club at risk so we put all our team funds towards the day-to-day running to help it survive. As a result we couldn’t afford a new kit for the boys so we entered Host Your Kit. It’s fantastic to have won. The new kit looks great and the boys will wear it with real pride.”

The team posed for a fun photo with their wellies on to celebrate winning the kit which they’ve been wearing at the tournaments they’re playing this summer.

Phil Worms, Director of Marketing for iomart, said: “The weather had a massive impact on the whole football club at Abingdon so we’re delighted to be able to help in some small way. We wish the team the very best of luck – they’ll need to swop those wellies for boots though!”

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iomart launches World Cup Fantasy Football League

iomart, the cloud hosting company behind Host Your Kit, has launched its own World Cup Fantasy Football League to celebrate the coming together of tech and sport at Brazil 2014.

iomart has partnered with Fantastar to launch ‘iomart Fantasy Football,’ to give the tech community a way to engage and interact while the World Cup takes place.

Phil Worms, Director of Marketing for iomart, said: “As well as anticipating some fantastic football on the pitch, this year’s World Cup will be the most technologically advanced ever staged and we wanted to celebrate the role that sport and IT plays in our daily lives. There’ll be goal-line technology for referees, some games are being broadcast in the new 4k ultra HD and the opening ceremony kick-off, by a patient using a mind-controlled exoskeleton, will launch a new chapter in neuroscience.

“As billions of the world’s citizens interact in real time with the tournament through social media, online games and news sites they will be doing so using platforms hosted in data centres, such as ours. iomart is enjoying exciting times as a tech company and there’s no better event than the World Cup to celebrate the impact that our industry has on a global scale.”

iomart is inviting as many companies and individuals as possible to get involved. Players will have the chance to compete in a main league and also create their own in-house leagues within their own organisations as well.

Fantastar is owned and operated by web design, fantasy sports and mobile app development company Blue Yellow Media Ltd.

Rob Tong, CEO of Fantastar, said: “We’re excited to bring this fantasy football game to iomart. The mobile optimised website allows players to tweak their team on the go, and our live stats mean that you can check scores and points in real time.”

For more information about iomart’s visit iomart World Cup Fantasy Football League web site / Like the campaign at Facebook and follow on Twitter.

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Host Your Kit’s Lucky 13 – April 2014

We have 13 lucky winners who will all be getting brand new kits courtesy of UK cloud company iomart and this month it’s a case of ‘Here come the Girls!’ Seven out of our 13 are girls’ teams including four of our football winners.

Here’s why the judges chose them, starting with football where we have our first winner from the Isle of Man with Marown Girls U13s. Their kit win is all down to a wonderful coach called Helen Withers who runs not one but four junior girls teams. The team the judges chose to award was her U13s side who have been with her since the start. Helen has seen them develop into a fantastic group of players and aims to take them right through to senior level. We’re delighted to be able to help Helen ensure that girls’ football continues to thrive on the island.

Chesterfield Ladies U12s were the judges’ second pick for April. They’ve actually struggled to field a full team this season – their coach says their matches have been like ‘David versus Goliath’ this season – but they still managed to finish in 5th place in their league. The judges love a team that battles against adversity so Chesterfield U12s are winners in our eyes.

Kent side Petts Wood FC U11 Girls are known as the ‘Flamingos’ within their club so we’re tickled pink to be able to award them a brand new kit.  They won the Fair Play award for their league and are in their cup final. Not only that but they’re part of a thriving club that does a lot of work in the local community.

Musselburgh Windsor Girls Club in East Lothian is celebrating its 60th anniversary this year. As a birthday present the club asked if we could help them replace their U11 side’s hand-me-down strip. Happy birthday from the judges – a present is on its way.

“They’re a great bunch of kids who work hard to raise money for their kits,” wrote one of the parents of a Cymru Rangers U14 Boys’ player, while the coach told us that they are going to be playing in their Rhyl & District League Cup final in a few weeks’ time. The judges decided to reward all their hard work with a brand spanking new adidas kit which we hope we can get to them in time so they can walk out looking top dollar for that match.

Knaresborough Town Juniors are Harrogate & District’s newest junior football club. Just two years old and backed by the more established local amateur club, they run two teams for Under 8s and Under 11s. We’re chuffed to be able to give the U11s a new kit to help support the club’s junior development strategy – hopefully the Under 8s might get their cast-offs!

Like many clubs Willerby Jags from Hull have found it difficult to attract sponsors. Their U15 Boys have paid the same subs for the last three years so it’s down to fundraising and supportive parents to help with equipment, kit and presentation nights. We hope a new kit helps ease the strain.

This month’s hockey winners are Harborne Hockey Club U14 Boys and Ardrossan Ladies U16s. Harborne Hockey Club was established in Birmingham back in 1903 and retains the accolade of being the club that scored the first ever goal in the National League. Their U14 boys’ team have had a tricky season but have held their heads up high. They’ve been playing their matches wearing baggy old senior players’ shirts, so we hope a brand new kit from iomart will get them back into winning ways for next season. The judges chose to reward Ardrossan because they have worked so hard to start a junior section and promote hockey to young girls in Ayrshire. From a standing start three years ago they now have more than 40 girls training with their junior section every week and are working with a number of local primary and secondary schools. The kit will be used by their new U16 development team when they make their debut in West of Scotland League Division 4 next season. Best of luck girls!

We have two rugby winners are Croesy Crusaders U11 Boys and Eastbourne U14 Boys.

Eastbourne Boys from East Sussex are on a 22 game running streak and have just won the South Coast Festival of Rugby. Your success definitely deserves rewarding with a new kit!

Croesy Crusaders hail from Cwmbran in Gwent and haven’t had a new kit for ages. They just came second in a big local tournament and are 100% dedicated to their sport.

In basketball congrats go to Edinburgh Lions U14 Girls’ team and Polonia Phoenix U10 Girls. Two senior ladies from the Edinburgh Lions decided to set up a team to help teach basketball to girls at the local high school and it’s really paid off as they’re now playing regular competitive matches in their regional development league.

And how could we refuse the wonderful Polonia Phoenix U10s Girls after they went to the trouble of making this fantastic video entry? Check it out at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5tN-C86TVyY&feature=youtu.be . They might be mini but they’re mighty in the judges’ eyes!

Thanks for all your entries and for those who weren’t winners this time, we’ll consider your entries for our next draw in May. So keep those fingers crossed.

In the meantime I’m off to check that I haven’t been sacked in my absence!


Keep enjoying your sport,


The HYK Gaffer


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Host Your Kit Winners – March 2014

Phew it was a tough decision for our judges this month as we have been absolutely inundated with entries. In fact we had so many to look through that I had to go and have a lie down half way through! Anyway we believe we have come up with a great set of winners who will all be donning a brand new kit from UK cloud company iomart.

The football category was particularly hard to judge as there were so many worthy stories that dropped into our inbox. The coach of Abingdon Town Under 11 Boys team in Oxfordshire told us how the winter floods had wrecked their pitch – from the videos online they should have a sailing team rather than a football team! – and how they had put all their funds into helping the club itself to survive.  We’re delighted to be able to send one of our fantastic adidas kits their way and hope it helps keep them and their club afloat. Glenafton Under 14 Boys are real battlers. They also had their pitch flooded but most importantly they’ve had to deal with the news that one of their young players has cancer.  They support their teammate in many ways and wear his number on their warm up kit. Now we hope they can extend that support to wearing his number on a brand new match strip. We wish him all the best and hope he’s able to re-join the team when he gets better.  Does anyone have a Welsh pronunciation guide??Our next winners are Troedyrhiw U14 Girls, a tricky name for an old gaffer like me. They are based in Merthyr Tydfil in the valleys of South Wales where it’s a real struggle to raise funds. The girls have to buy their own shirts and despite the financial difficulties they’ve still managed to produce six players to represent Wales. You can uncross those fingers girls, a new kit is on its way!

Host Your Kit is about celebrating success as well as helping those in difficulty. We decided to reward Aztec Stars Under 15 Boys from North Wales with a brand new kit because of their amazing team spirit – the team has been together since they were 5 years old. They don’t have a kit sponsor and are off to represent their club at a tournament in Belgium soon so we are proud as punch to fulfil that role and help them kick off in a great new kit. And Woburn Lionesses Under 15 Girls also win themselves a new adidas kit for their commitment and success this season. They’ve reached their county cup final and are winning matches like I eat hotcakes so a new kit will be a great reward for them.

On to rugby and we have three winners who will all be getting brand new kits from Gilbert. Bowdon Under 12 Boys from Altrincham, Greater Manchester, have been doing lots of volunteer work like cleaning cars and helping people with their shopping to raise money for a new kit. They said that if they won one from us they will give the money they’ve raised to help one of the younger teams so boys, get ready to hand that money over as you’ve won one!  Eccles Under 13 Girls is a new team established just a year ago after a huge drive to raise awareness of rugby among girls in the Greater Manchester area. At the moment they are wearing boys’ cast-offs so girls, get ready to wear a top quality properly fitting kit from now on. And Edenbridge Under 15 Girls is a newly established team in Kent. It’s the first girls’ team they’ve ever had at Edenbridge RFC and currently boasts 24 players. You might have to fight over the kit girls but we hope it gives you that added edge on the pitch!

In hockey we have two worthy winners from the north of England. Kendal Under 16 Girls train and play in the Lake District. They have to wear tatty old shirts and all the club’s funding comes from fees and donations. We’ve glad to be able to donate a high quality new kit to help them out. And Pendle Forest Under 13 Girls in East Lancashire asked us to help them because to quote their coach “it would be one less financial headache for their supportive parents who give up their time and hard earned money throughout the season.” Well said coach!

Finally we have chosen two terrific basketball teams to get new Spalding kits.  Gracemount Panthers Under 16 Girls team in Edinburgh  has to share a strip with their senior ladies team so we’re delighted to present them with one of their very own. And Hollinwood Under 10 Boys have never had their own kit since they came together a few years ago. Well boys, that’s about to change!

Congratulations to all our winners, we hope you like your new kits. For those teams not lucky enough to win a kit this month, we will keep your entries and consider them for next month’s giveaway, so keep those fingers crossed. Keep playing well and enjoying your sport.

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