Pre-season for the Oldham Hulme Grammar School football teams are a distant memory now as the new season football season is well underway.This season sees an exciting addition to the training programme as Oldham Hulme Grammar School have recently formed a partnership for the coming year with Oldham Athletic Community Trust which will see OACT coaches work alongside the school staff to coach the school's football team.
Oldham Hulme Grammar School currently competes in the Independent Schools Football Association (I.S.F.A.) league on Saturday mornings. The school have approached the Community Scheme with the aim being to bring a professional element to the coaching sessions and supporting the continued development of the schools teaching staff.
Angus Hurst, Director of Sport, commented: "We are really excited to go into partnership with Oldham Athletic Community Trust. We are looking forward to combining forces to help football in the town flourish. We play a group of block fixtures against other independent schools and like-minded state schools.
"We travel as far east as Sheffield, north as Blackburn, south as Wolverhampton and west as Liverpool. This involves a huge commitment by the staff and boys to play these fixtures on a Saturday morning as well as taking part in as many as five cup competitions during the week.
"We also were invited this season to take part in the HADAF International Invitational Tournament in Doha, Qatar. This was a fabulous experience which was enhanced by a good run taking us to the semi-finals."
As part of the link Oldham Athletic players will visit the school to speak to the students and be on hand to provide some advice around football.
Martin Vose, OACT Participation Manager, added: "I am really excited to form this link with OHGS. I believe it is the start of a long and successful partnership for both parties.
"This link represents an exciting challenge for our coaches who I know cannot wait for this new challenge. The link also offers additional positives for the long term which I hope will benefit both organisations but also the wider community of Oldham."
In addition to the boys football training, Oldham Athletic Community Trust coaches will also be delivering some girls specific football training as part of the Football League Trusts Female Football Development Programme. The FFD programmeaims to drive participation growth and retention as it delivers free FFD sessions throughout 2014 and beyond.
The Football League Trust's FFD programme is a pivotal part of this drive, distributing £547,000 across the country with an ambitious target to reach 14,760 new female players through Oldham Athletic and 53 of its fellow Football League clubs. FFD’s challenge is to account for over a third of the FA’s aims, in supporting the goal to make Women’s Football the second largest team sport in the country behind men’s football.
From left to right (pictured): Flynn Bradley (U15 captain), Ryan Hall (Senior Captain), Owen Coyle (Community Coach), Will Lomax (U14 Captain).