Football club officials hail ‘exciting opportunities’ available as links flourish within the community
- Credit: Archant
Officials at a football club have expressed delight at 'the progress' that has been made in such a short amount of time within the community.
With 13 league matches left in the Premier Division Central, Lowestoft Town FC are continuing to plot their path to safety as the league season enters a crucial phase.
And with the club's management remaining fully focused on the task ahead as the hard work intensifies on the pitch, off it the club is making great strides with its development and progression within the area.
Next Monday, February 18 students currently in Year 11 or 12 from across the area are being invited to the club's home ground – the Amber Dew Events Stadium – as an information evening is held to highlight the 'opportunities available' with the club's scholarship progamme showcasing how locals can combine further education with elite football.
Andy Reynolds, Lowestoft Town FC assistant manager, said: 'As a football club, everything is going really well.
'We have an information evening to showcase our scholarship progamme on Monday evening from 6pm to 8pm at the football club – it is an opportunity for players and parents to come along and see what we offer on our full time training programme,'
There will be a presentation about the course and club itself followed by a one hour football session, with the examples of Cion Wren, Fletcher Hedge and Cole Overy being highlighted – all scholars who have played for the first team this season – during the open evening.
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The club's youth football pathway, run in partnership with the North Suffolk Football Community and Sentinel Leisure Trust to deliver a 'pre-13' programme, is progressing well while Lowestoft Town Centre of Excellence programme launched with Ipswich Town FC for those in the age range from U13 to U16 is providing 'exciting' opportunities.
And as Lowestoft continue to engage town youngsters with the football club, as club officials work in partnership with primary schools across the town to hold regular training sessions, Mr Reynolds said: 'This work off the field and progression of the pathway is probably going better than what we had anticipated.
'We continue to provide all the pathways at the best level and we're still going into schools such as Gunton, Phoenix and Northfield with coach and first teamer Travis Cole training and inspiring the young children.
'The youngsters have been working with Travis – a local lad who has played at a high standard with Ipswich Town, and he is a great role model for the children. 'Seeing him first hand on the pitch shows what can be achieved and it provides great aspirations to the youngsters to get them involved in sport by helping them become better players and creates opportunities for the primary school children to come and watch Lowestoft Town games with their parents.
'We have seen some really good performances from the scholars and very talented players we have within the pathway.
'The scholarship programme is trying to give youngsters the foundations to progress their football and go onto further education and careers in sport.
'We want to be able to offer educational football oppiortunities for everyone – with young people coming to Lowestoft Town with aspirations of developing within the sports industry.
'Overall the programme and pathways within the club and community have shown just how the young players have progressed in such a short amount of time – and we are delighted.
'The signs are encouraging if people get on board early.
'We have some really talented boys in our centre of excellence U15 academy side led by Travis Cole and Rowan Charlton and they will enter the Eastern Junior Alliance representing Lowestoft next season.
'The U13 centre of excellence programme with Ipswich Town FC is going really well. They have had a few training nights and everything is looking really good,' Mr Reynolds added.
'Ipswich are really delighted with the standard of the boys, who are showing a lot of potential.
'It is trying to provide an opportunity for the best young players to develop through some really competitive football, but it is also important to highlight that we have relationships with Waveney, Kirkley and Pakefield and other clubs as well – as we want to help every player find the best level of football for them.'