Willow Park FC was founded in 1972 by local residents from a newly formed housing estate to get young people from the area involved in sports. It began with Frank Frawley (RIP), who coming from a tradition of football, took it upon himself to ensure the local kids had a place to play their favourite game. Joined by Frank Kiernan , Billy Doyle, Frank Sheeran and Sean Kelly (RIP) they had the area cleared within days and the first organised game played.
The lads then went onto form the first committee of Willow Park FC. They then entered some of the first teams in the newly reformed Athlone Schoolboys League and Midlands Schoolboy League. This was to become the grounding for Willow Park FC as many of the present day senior players have come through the schoolboy system at the club.
The first registered player on Athlone’s books was Amby Fogerty who went on to play with Athlone Town and with Athlone GFC. The club was helped greatly in its foundation years by Padriac Nicholson (now an FAI coach), Denis Clark who went on to be a player at Manchester City, several League of Ireland clubs and managed both Athlone Town and Galway United and also Seamus Hayes.
In 1984 the Willow Park Sports and Social Club was formed to buy 10 acres of land adjoining the housing estate and in 1985 the first junior football team entered the Midlands League supported by Joe Fox and managed by Steve Scullion. In the next 10 years the club had some success as well as having lean times but never faltered and with ever increasing fund raising were able to open new dressing rooms in 1997.
In 2005 improvements were carried out on the dressing rooms and in 2007 an Astro turf training facility was added to the two full size pitches that were already there. 2010 saw the addition of floodlights to the main senior pitch. Also in 2010 we won the AVIVA FAI club of the Month.
The club has three junior football teams (2 men & 1 ladies), three Youths teams as well as schoolboy/girl teams from under 6 to under 16s involving 14 teams and 150 players.
Down through the years there have been managers and committees who kept The Willow up and running and today’s club committee and players would like to take this time to thank them all for without them we would not be here today.