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FAQs

WHO ARE THE LONDON RAIDERS?


We are an amateur softball club with six teams in the London Softball League (which makes us the biggest club in the country!), and a big social diary throughout the year. We have teams of all abilities in all divisions in the league. We always field mixed gender teams and often enter tournaments. If we don’t win on the pitch, we win in the pub.




DO I NEED TO BE LGBT+ TO JOIN?


No, and you shouldn't expect all our members to be LGBT+ either. Raiders is all about fun and competitive softball in a supportive, respectful environment. We are a majority LGBT+ club, however we welcome anyone who wants to enjoy the sport. If you’re comfortable with the Raiders, the Raiders are comfortable with you.




HOW DO I GET STARTED?


If you have never played softball before you should start in our training group where you will meet other people new to the sport who want to learn, have fun and make new friends. You're then likely to play for one of our Minors 3 teams (Indigo, Orange or Green). There are a lot of rules in softball and with the help of our trainers and seasoned players we will take you from wondering what a ‘forced run’ is to being able to explain the ‘infield fly’ with confidence. Softball is a highly addictive and rewarding sport to play offering great fitness and social rewards. If you have played before, please come along to one of our training sessions, we we can evaluate your ability and select you for the appropriate team. The dates and times will be posted on our website. The venue is Wandsworth Common (the area on Bellevue Road, across from The Hope pub). Before joining you should also look at our club rules.




WHAT ARE THE RULES OF SOFTBALL?


The type of softball we play is called Slow Pitch. It’s bit like baseball but with a bigger, slower ball pitched (or bowled) underarm. If you’re new to the sport, the best thing to do is learn the rules playing in the one of our Minors 3 teams. No one will expect you to understand what “Force is on 2, with 2 down” means until you’ve been here a while.You can search online for “softball rules” to find lots of handy guides, but we will teach you the official BaseballSoftballUK (BSUK) rules. BSUK governs our leagues. Our experienced players will be happy to help you understand the rules as you go.




WHAT EQUIPMENT DO I NEED?


Softball, like many sports requires certain items of equipment for the game to be played. You will be familiar with items such as balls and bases which the club supply, however once you decided the Raiders is for you, you'll be expected to have a glove for catching the balls when fielding. London Raiders provide a certain amount of equipment to members for training sessions.




WHERE DO YOU PLAY?


Our home ground is Bellevue Road in Wandsworth Common, opposite the Hope pub. We have a handy Pitch Locator on our Members page. The best train station is Wandsworth Common. It’s a very long walk from Wandsworth Town. Our League games happen all over London and the night depends on your team, for example, Red might play on Mondays and Gold might play on Fridays. Our different teams have different home grounds. Our website will tell you where each team plays and there will be regular updates on weekly games through our social media feeds if you fancy supporting our teams.




WHAT ABOUT SOCIAL ACTIVITIES?


London Raiders are a very social bunch. We have a Start of Season Party, we march in London Pride, we have Quiz Nights, an off-season Bowling league, lots of other nights out, an End of Season Party. This may negate any fitness you incur from playing softball. Don't forget to keep an eye on the Calendar and on the Facebook Group.