We are now proud sponsors of the Sussex Bears Wheelchair Basketball team!

On Saturday 29th February, we were privileged to see the first game of the Sussex Bears Wheelchair Basketball team play with our name on their team shirts.

The sponsorship will see all the wheelchair basketball teams roll out on court in 2020 with the Birchwood Group logo and the 4 car brands displayed at the playing strip, at all matches, both home and away.

​"...I knew this was much more than a 'shirt sponsor' - it was a company that wanted to help people, promote health, well-being and community engagement."

I believe that the community ethos, the on court competitive spirit of the club and because we have the desire to help others is the reason that this wheelchair basketball team and the Birchwood Motor Group have formed this sponsorship.

From the very early meetings and conversations with Birchwood Group I could see that I had found a big company with a big heart and a shared community focused approach, they were a company that instantly saw what a powerful sport wheelchair basketball was and how life changing it could be.

Every member of staff, every manager, every director of Birchwood Group I met were keen to hear all about the exciting journey that Sussex Bears wheelchair basketball teams had been on since the team was started, and I knew this was much more than a "shirt sponsor" - it was a company that wanted to help people, promote health, well-being and community engagement.

Every player in the wheelchair basketball teams love the new kit, and having a corporate sponsor that believes and invests in a disability sport creates a "feel good factor", it makes people feel valued, and that is priceless.

Ricky Perrin - Team Manager (Active Sussex - Sports volunteer of the year award winner 2019)

"We look forward to a long and mutually beneficial relationship with Ricky and the Sussex Bears wheel chair team."

In 2019, we were reviewing our community partners and with fortuitous timing, we received an impassioned appeal for sponsorship from the Sussex Bears Wheelchair team. A meeting was duly arranged and from the moment we met Ricky, we were inspired by his passion and commitment to promoting this fantastic team and the opportunities on offer.

We knew that our 2 Brands were a perfect values match and were delighted to be named as their chosen sponsor. Since that initial meeting Ricky has gone on to inspire Birchwood colleagues by hosting the first interdepartmental wheelchair basketball sessions; an event we plan to repeat on a regular basis. These sessions broaden our team members understanding and appreciation of the sheer skill and determination required for wheelchair athletes, some of whom may be customers of the Group.

We look forward to a long and mutually beneficial relationship with Ricky and the Sussex Bears wheel chair team.

Paula Kemp (Marketing Director), Simon Bigwood (Brand Leader) - Birchwood Group

The History

Sussex Bears was formed in 2012, and the wheelchair team join the Bears in 2017. Manager Ricky Perrin, coaches Pete Bull, Craig Wilson and team captain Pauline Bull met with the Sussex Bears as they had always wanted to make inclusion and community at the forefront of everything they had been doing since 2012, so to have a wheel chair basketball team would fit perfectly. ​

On The Court

The wheelchair basketball team saw their first season in September 2017, and since then have seen the club go from strength to strength. Year 1 saw the first team finish top of division 3 South, and the following season the second team finished top of division 4.

The team are playing in 3 leagues, and see between 20 and 30 people travel to the weekly training held at the home court of the Sir Robert Woodard Academy.

The first team is currently 2nd in the league with a game in hand!

​In the Community

Described as "one of the best outreach programs in the country" by British wheelchair basketball, the team have taken wheelchair basketball to the masses.

The team currently links up with many schools, universities and local community groups, and also works with the NHS and CCG to try and highly the benefits of playing wheelchair basketball.

The sport has shown to have a hugely positive impact on those that have a disability, in giving them a competitive spirit and the strength to live independently.

Would you like to know more?

Visit the Sussex Bears website for all the latest information on the teams, training, and matches -

Find out more