Chloe doing her bit to spur women on
SPORTS fan Chloe Dell would love to get more women involved in sport.
Chloe helps produce media content for Bristol City Women’s FC, and helps to operate the big screen at Ashton Gate for the men’s team’s home games.
Her love of sport developed during her time at Wells Blue School, and her interest in media evolved when she started volunteering at Glastonbury FM.
“I have always loved playing hockey because of the physicality of it and it’s a real team sport,” said Chloe.
“I had great experiences of playing sport at The Blue, particularly hockey. From Year 7 until Year 12 we had pretty much the same team and teachers. It was a lot of fun and I think is a big part of why I have always loved sport. I now play for Wells City when I’m not working.
“I have also rowed for over five years too which I enjoy but it’s a pretty relentless sport, it’s very technical and no fun in bad weather.”
Chloe is a strong advocate of women’s sport and is keen for more women to get involved.
“I hope to be able to help increase the interest and participation in women’s sport,” she said.
“I think like most things it all needs to start at the grassroots level: getting girls to play football, rugby, cricket etc at primary school and then offering a pathway for them to develop and become competitive.
“I also think as a society we need to get away from gender stereotyping sport and sport being ‘just for boys’. The more women entering a career to do with sport, the more women will hold senior roles and be in a position to get women’s sport on the map.”
Her own sporting heroes are tennis players Serena and Venus Williams. She said: “They, especially Serena, defied the norms of female athletes at the time, particularly in tennis. She plays with aggression and phenomenal power that has set her apart from the rest. I find it frustrating when she has been described as the greatest female tennis player of all time because she is simply one of the greatest athletes of all time.
“Records and grand slams aside she has faced medical scares, numerous injuries, racism, and now well into her 30s and four months after giving birth doesn’t look like she’s about to stop.”
Chloe has been working on media content for Bristol City Women’s FC since September, after responding to an email sent by a lecturer on her journalism masters course at the University of the West of England saying that the club was looking for media interns.
She mainly shoots and edits video content for social media and the website, and attends matches when she can where she helps with match-day duties.
“The women’s game is becoming more professional and BCWFC are certainly working hard to achieve this,” said Chloe, who is also a freelance researcher and runner with BBC Sport Wales.
“Recent changes within the club and the changes in the WSL is making a difference in the women’s game. More matches are being shown on the BBC and media are attending the big clashes with the top teams like Man City, Arsenal and Chelsea. The game is certainly heading in the right direction.”
From being involved at the club and chatting to people at Bristol Sport, Chloe became a big screen operator at Ashton Gate.
“It’s very exciting and a privilege to watch games like the Man United one,” she said.
“The same with the women. I remember when we drew away to Arsenal at the beginning of the season and also had a close home cup game against Chelsea. These are the biggest women’s clubs full of international talent so to put up a gutsy performance is always commendable.”
To relax, Chloe likes nothing better than to watch sport on TV.
“I really enjoy international rugby, there’s nothing like a good Six Nations clash,” she said.
“I really get into the Olympics, both summer and winter. Every Olympics I find a niche sport I can’t stop watching, curling is a particular favourite.”
Close eye on big screen at big game
Here, Chloe describes what she did during Bristol City’s recent Carabao Cup semi-final second leg game at home to Manchester City.
6.15pm: Arrive at the Media Control Room. The media director discusses the running order with me and we go through the VTs to check they’re OK.
7pm: Put up first VT on big screen, derby highlights. Put up other VTs every few minutes until kick-off, interspersed with music, counting down the last 10 seconds of the VT so the DJ knows when to put the music back on.
7.15pm: Put up teamsheets.
7.44pm: Teamsheets again.
7.45pm: Kick off. Put score up, and update it each time a goal is scored. For this game, we put a ‘Come on you Reds’ slide on the big screen throughout the game to get the crowd going.
8.30pm: Half time. Put up half-time draw and adverts.
8.45pm: Second half starts. Score goes back up; keep an eye on that and the ‘Come on you Reds’ slide.
9.45pm: Game ends. Put adverts back up until everyone has left the stadium. It was a very busy night so timings were crucial.