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Weekly Edition - Publication date:- 2017-01-06

-en Southport & Mersey Reporter

Local News Report  - Mobile Page


Hundreds of School children try rugby in Southport

HUNDREDS of local youngsters are being given the chance to become rising rugby stars thanks to an initiative by Southport Rugby Club, which is aimed at getting more young people into the sport.

With the help of funding from Fletcher's Solicitors, Sport England and Southport RFC, Primary and Secondary School children in Southport and Formby are getting the opportunity to train with professional coaches over the course of a number of weeks.

Pupils have the chance to take part in rugby skills sessions as part of their School's Curriculum and also in extracurricular clubs. Schools from around the local area can then compete against each other and put their training to the test at the Rugby Festival, which is held at Southport Rugby Club.

The community coaching scheme, launched in November, now employs 3 community coaches who are working with schools across Southport and Formby.

Coaching is taking place at:- Bishop David Sheppard, Kew Woods, Birkdale High, St Johns Ainsdale and Holy Trinity. In 2017, girls coaching will begin at:- Formby High, Greenbank and Meols Cop.

Organisers hope to grow the scheme in 2017, to work with more schools, recruit new coaches and encourage more young people to give rugby a try.

1 of the community coaches involved with the scheme is James Bailey. He said:- "It's been a real privilege to be part of this scheme and I'm proud to see how many children have thrown themselves into the sport. A key focus for us is to attract more girls into rugby and this has been really successful so far. Our girl's rugby festival, which took place earlier this year, saw 100 players competing at the club. It was brilliant to see so many girls getting involved and we're hoping to recruit even more young people next year, while also hiring more community coaches to keep expanding the scheme. We're looking forward to hosting another big festival in the spring time."

Ed Fletcher, CEO of Fletchers Solicitors, said:- "We're really proud to support Southport RFC's community coaching initiative. We know how beneficial sport can be for health, wellbeing and community spirit, so to see how successful the scheme has been so far is fantastic. We look forward to cheering the teams on in next year's rugby festivals, which are set to be bigger and better than ever."


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