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Wednesday, March 20, 2024



JUST A BALL GAME? MEDIA RELEASE- For immediate release                                      



It’s not often that two worlds collide.

But when our LGBT+ campaign organisation JUST A BALL GAME? needed help almost 14 years ago in stepped Arkansas/Portland punks THE GOSSIP, to lend a helping hand in ensuring we obtained our very first flyers, banners and t-shirts, by way of a much needed minimal donation, and a synthesis was created when they agreed to become our Patrons..

 For those unfamiliar, our non-profit campaign looks at raising awareness of LGBT+ visibility and inclusion in football (soccer) and other sports. LGBT+ musicians stepped in where the football authorities and excessively paid professional players turned the other cheek. Football, music, art and LGBT+ communities often overlap, and not just in our teenage years.

Beth Ditto, Nathan Howdeshell and Hannah Blilie (Gossip) have indeed traversed a complex path from their raw, underground beginnings to becoming emblematic figures for inclusivity and defiance. The journey of the band highlights not just the evolution of their music from raucous punk to a more polished disco, indie, alternative dance fusion, but also the journey of societal attitudes towards diversity, inclusion and acceptance.

Ditto's fearless embrace of her identity was radical at the band's inception, challenging norms and inspiring countless individuals. Her visibility as a "lesbian and blatantly feminist" figure at the forefront of a successful band broke barriers and made space for discussions around body positivity, queer rights, and feminism in spaces where these conversations might not have previously occurred.

Their music, vibrant and unapologetic, resonated particularly in Europe and the UK, though they maintained a loyal following in the US among those touched by their message and energy. The pause in their career highlights the personal growth and changes each member faced, showcasing that behind their public personas were individual journeys of self-discovery and change.

The 2019 reunion for the anniversary tour for the “Music For Men” album and the forthcoming March 22nd release of "Real Power" come at a time when the messages Gossip has long championed are being echoed more widely across society. The resurgence isn't just about the band making music again; it symbolizes the enduring relevance of their advocacy and the continued fight for inclusivity and acceptance.


At Berlin’s Lido venue the night before the vinyl, CD’s and streams are released old and new generations of fans will unite for what will be an undoubtable experience worth the wait.  

The origins of Gossip in Arkansas, a place not widely recognized for its punk or queer scenes, further illuminate the band's defiance against mainstream expectations. Their transition from a raw, untutored sound to a more refined yet equally potent musical force speaks to their development as artists. 

Gossip’s journey, characterized by authenticity, defiance, and a deep bond among its members, encapsulates the essence of punk's confrontational spirit and the enduring impact of music on individual and collective consciousness. Their continuance as a band, marked by a hiatus and triumphant return, celebrates not only their musical evolution but also their lasting influence on societal attitudes towards queerness, body positivity, and the power of living authentically.


Monday, December 11, 2023

Sparkle – The National Transgender Charity are given JUST A BALL GAME? award 2023.



Sparkle – The National Transgender Charity are given JUST A BALL GAME? award 2023.

 JUST A BALL GAME? have announced that this year’s LGBT+ inclusion and visibility award has been given to SPARKLE- THE NATIONAL TRANSGENDER CHARITY.

 Sparkle have been fighting inequality and discrimination for almost two decades now. And, they pride themselves with one of their core values being that their events remain free to attend and are accessible to everyone.

 JBG? say: “We first joined forces with Sparkle 3 years ago and have supported as much of their work as we could since then in the form of event days and helping out with providing resources for community members who are active and campaigning.

 In the past year we have seen the Manchester based charity do their upmost to continue the workload they have before them through many difficult, challenging and forever changing circumstances.”

 “The young volunteers have given their all to help others despite attempts from some UK government ministers wanting to overhaul parts of the Equality Act, and worrying increases of hate crimes both online and directed personally at people.”

 On receiving the silver salver, the team at Sparkle - The National Transgender Charity, say they are delighted to have won the 2023 Just A Ball Game? Award! 

 “We are pleased to be acknowledged for our community passion and volunteer-led mission to the trans community.”

 One of our new Key Volunteers, Chlo (they/them) said: “It’s so easy to get lost in the work we do. It never feels enough. This award meant so much to myself and the team to see the work we are doing has so much impact! Thank you for recognising us, we can’t wait to show you what we’ve got planned for 2024!”




Contact for further information: 07788474754.

Founder-Lindsay England  

Wednesday, November 08, 2023

Just A Ball Game? vitrines feature at National Football Museum as part of 13th birthday celebrations.


Just A Ball Game? vitrines feature at National Football Museum as part of 13th birthday celebrations.

Celebrations for Just A Ball Game?’s 13th birthday begin on 9th November 2023 with the unveiling of two vitrines which will feature trophies, medals and other memorabilia from JBG’s Women’s Futsal/Fives team alongside their campaign materials at the National Football Museum .

The team won 16 league, cup and tournament titles between their formation in January 2014 and April 2018, and finished regional and national runners up a further 3 times during those 4 years of dominance.  

Alongside the exhibit cases JBG? will have their patrons women’s game exhibition panels on display and a small stand handing out free resources to those visiting the museum this week.  


The LGBT+ campaign has been working with the National Football Museum on a number of event days since it opened its doors on the Urbis site in the summer of 2012.

It’s hoped that in February 2024 JBG? will co-curate a fan exhibition featuring items collected from the 2023 Women’s World Cup, including a giant 20ft flag with over 4.500 fan names and messages of support for England’s Lionesses WWC Final squad alongside media and photographic collections from supporters who travelled out to Australia and New Zealand for the tournament.

The JBG? displays and staffed stand can be visited on these dates:

Thursday 9th Nov 10am -5pm, Friday 10th Nov 12noon to 5pm, and Saturday 11th Nov 10am to 5pm.