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COMMUNITY TRUST PROGRAMME NOTES

25 November 2016

The Community Trust programme notes

This piece was written for the Portsmouth programme by the head of the Hatters Community Trust, Kevin Thoburn. 

Winning Walking Footballers!

It was great to welcome a true Luton legend onto the pitch at our last home game as former Hatter  Kingsley Black presented our over 50s mens walking football teams with the Beds FA ‘Advanced’ and ‘Intermediate’ Cups following their recent successful exploits in the Bedfordshire tournament.

Kingsley pulled on the jersey for the Hatters over 120 times and most of our ‘veteran’ walking footballers reckon they saw most of his home appearances back in the day.

Our walking football sessions have grown in popularity over the last year with new players joining every week, and while most of the guys are season ticket holders it is not a pre-requisite to joining the group. 

The rules are simple, the same as five-a-side, if you can cast your memory back that far, except if you run, you concede a free-kick – so no danger there then!  

The group runs every Wednesday evening 6-7pm on the astro turf pro zones at the back of V360 (next to the old astro pitch), and newcomers are always welcome. Don’t worry if you haven’t pulled a shirt on for 20 years or you are think you might lack a bit of confidence –everybody’s in in the same boat, just looking for a bit of a run out (sorry walk out) and a social. 

Last year we held the EFL regional walking football tournament at V360 and the turnout was great, with three teams competing for the Hatters against teams from other local professional clubs including Northampton, Stevenage and Norwich. 

With our weekly sessions going from strength to strength, we are now are beginning to enter similar tournaments on a regular basis. If you’ve not tried it before and think what’s the point, then believe us when we say that last year’s tournament was extremely competitive at all levels. 

If you want further information simply call the community office on 01582 737568 or email us on community@lutontown.co.uk 

The cost of each session is £5.00 and you can simply pay and play with no commitment to play regularly – you can miss a week or two and play whenever you feel up to it. We’re a friendly bunch – why not come down and join us!

EFL Kinder Sport+ Girls U13 Cup  

Congratulations to Queensbury High School in Dunstable who have made the regional final in the EFL Kinder Sport+ Girls U13 Cup. The girls played out their final at half-time during our last home game, against last season’s winning finalists, Challney Girls School from Luton, and ended up winning 3-0 with two late goals making the game look a lot easier than it was.  

If successful in the East Anglian regionals, the Queensbury girls could proceed to the regional North v South final with the eventual final to be played at Wembley Stadium before the Sky Bet League Two Play-Off Final at Wembley in May. 

Before then, the girls now proceed to the regional finals representing Luton Town FC to play the winning schools from Charlton Athletic, Stevenage, Dagenham, Leyton Orient, Millwall, Southend and Gillingham football clubs.  

We wish them all the very best of luck in their attempt to reach Wembley and thank them for representing the Hatters in this year’s competition. 

Skills Performance Centres - Talent Identification Programme: Term Two – November to February

This week we start term two of our Skills Performance Centre talent identification programme, which feeds into our youth development structure. We have 12 regional football development centres, with three in Luton, open to all youngsters aged from school year two up to year 11. 

The Skills coaching centres offer a nine-week programme ending with a trial match for everyone. Successful boys then progress onto our centre of excellence and pre-academy development centres, with eventual pathways into our youth academy. The centres are open to all abilities and below we have listed all of our weekly centres.

WHAT ARE SKILLS PERFORMANCE CENTRES ALL ABOUT? 

The successful ‘Skills’ Development Programme is now in its ninth year of operation. The purpose of these centres are to provide high quality coaching for up and coming footballers. 

Whether you are an ambitious player wanting to progress towards becoming a professional, or a newcomer, wanting to develop the basics, the Skills Programme has something to offer you. 

To date over 70 players have been signed into our development programme through the Skills programme, which has proved our most successful recruitment tool in the past.  

The cost is £45 per term, which includes nine practical sessions and one assessment. In addition to the trial match, players will receive a report on their personal development during the nine-week programme. 

If your coach feels you have shown the right levels of ability and attitude during the term, you will be given the opportunity to progress to the Centre of Excellence/Pre-Academy. Players who display talent can be moved through the programme after only a few weeks if appropriate. 

All players receive a written player assessment towards the end of the nine-week term. You also have the opportunity to discuss the assessment with your coach at the end of the term as part of our continuous assessment process.

Our weekly centres run in Arlesey, Bedford, Dunstable, Flitwick/Ampthill, Harpenden, Kempston, Leighton Buzzard, Luton (3), Milton Keynes and St Albans, and if you would like further information on the programme starting next week simply ring the Community Trust office on 01582 737568 or email us at tips@lutontown.co.uk


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