Oldham Athletic Community Trust Kicks project in Stoneleigh Park has recently received some support from local businessman and former Stoneleigh Primary School student Martin Thomas.
Martin Thomas, who owns Optima Cars, has shown his support for the project to help sustain the future of the project in an area which he holds close to his heart.
The sessions in the park were first started last summer in an attempt to cut down the level of anti-social behaviour in the area. One year on and the sessions are still running in the park, with the help of partners such as 'The Friends Of Stoneleigh Park' and PCSO Anna Pun. The session is held every Friday night in the park, 6-8pm and is free for the children to attend.
Martin Thomas commented: "I am proud to have gone to Stoneleigh as my first school and it’s great to be able to help out in a small way and give the local kids a chance to enjoy the park along with Latics, it just seems a great fit."
The sessions attract young people from the age of four up to the age of 16 with activities such as football, pool and arts and crafts on offer in any weather thanks to Angela Cosgrove and the FOSP team who help run the sessions with the OACT coaches Kyle Riley and Dale Harris. The sessions are designed to be a place that young people can feel safe at. Many weeks there is a real family feel as parents come down and join in with the fun.
Martin Vose, OACT participation manager, added: "We are so grateful of the support from Martin. His support will enable us to secure the future of the sessions for at least the summer period which is a period which we will predict will be a busy period.
"Last year over the six week holiday over 70 young people were at our sessions in the park. It's fantastic to see local businesses and local people backing the Kicks project, both here in Derker but also borough wide."