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The age old excuse of not having enough time to keep fit doesn’t quite wash with a group of football loving employees.

Every week they juggle their diaries to make room for one - if not two - opportunities to lace up their trainers and spend 60 minutes trying to hit the ball into the back of the net.

Originally set up in 1994, after “a few fitness issues” came to light when a group of workmates from the then Central Regional Council Roads Department played in a five-a-sides tournament.

Determined to up their fitness levels they began playing fives at lunchtime once a week. Moving to Abbotsford House then opened up a new opportunity - to bring their players together with others from Architects and Facilities to kick a ball twice a week.

For the past 19 years the games have been a permanent fixture and now take place every Monday and Thursday, from 12.30pm to 1.30pm, in Polmont Sports Centre.

Gavin Davie, organiser, and Senior Area Roads Officer, said: “Fitness played a big part in our decision to set up a regular game, but there are also added mental health benefits too. Play and keeping fit is a great way to get away from the stresses and strains of the working day. I also head to Grangemouth Sports Complex two to three times a week at lunchtime and have entered into Tough Mudder this year so the games are helping my training. 

“It can sometimes be difficult to get 10 players together but word of mouth has helped us keep the games going for all these years. At the moment most players come from Earls Road, Abbotsford and Falkirk Municipal Buildings, but games are open to everyone and are gender neutral. We’re always on the look out for new players and one of the first questions we ask new starts in our department is if they play fives!”

The recent Employee Wellbeing Survey highlighted that, of those who responded, 80% didn’t get the recommended 150 minutes of exercise each week.

If you want to up your fitness levels and get the added mental health benefits that come with regular exercise, why not consider playing fives? If you fancy a match, drop an email to