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4 January 2017

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Community Trust notes from Talk of the Town

These programme notes were written by the Hatters Community Trust Manager, Kevin Thoburn, for the Town's Boxing Day and New Year's Eve matches against Colchester United and Barnet.

The holidays are a very busy time of the year for everyone and especially our first team squad who have three games in eight days to prepare for, along with trying to fit in all of the other traditional Christmas player duties including visits to local hospitals and charities etc.

So, we were particularly happy to welcome club captain Scott Cuthbert, Dan Potts and Olly Lee to our last men’s disability football training session of the year at Inspire Sports Village in Stopsley a fortnight ago.

Both of our disability teams are currently training indoors during the league winter break, preparing with real dedication for the new season to begin in March next year.

It was great for Scott, Dan and Olly to watch the guys train with such dedication and enthusiasm, and it was also great for all of our disability footballers who got a real kick out of showing off their skills to our first team players.

Once training was over it was also time to hand out Christmas presents to everyone to finish off a training session that everyone would remember. It didn’t end there, however, as Scott, Dan and Olly gave all of the players match tickets for the Carlisle game with the news that the new kit for next season would be presented at half-time by Ssangyong our shirt sponsors.

Not all of the players were able to make the game, but main board director and chairman of the Trust’s trustee board, Bob Curson, was on hand to present the new kit along with a couple of staff members from Ssangyong, Bob and Darren.

It ensures that the teams will be flying the flag for the Hatters and wearing the badge with pride during next year’s league fixtures and, of course, during the defence of their FA Peoples Cup trophy.

We run lots of both football and multi sports sessions during the week as part of our every player counts programme sponsored by the EFL Trust and Wembley national Stadium Trust, and if you know someone with a learning disability who you think might like to get involved then please give us a call at the community office on 01582 737568, or drop us an email at

Congratulations to Hillborough Junior School, who beat St Joseph’s Junior School 2-0 in our Bedfordshire Kids Cup Final here at Kenilworth Road during half-time at the Carlisle game.

Over 20 schools took part in our Bedfordshire tournament, with the two finalists providing a great game and hopefully strong winners in the rest of the competition.

The U11 Kids Cup is the biggest youth competition in the country, with every EFL Club entering teams via regional six-a-side competitions culminating in three finals across the EFL Play-Off weekends in May. All 72 Football League clubs are first split into three divisions, in line with our divisional status before being again split into two groups, north and south.

So our local winners, Hillborough Junior School, will progress as Luton Town FC into the Division Two South play-offs next month down at Portsmouth FC’s training
ground against other regional winners from Wolves, QPR, Swindon, MK Dons, Oxford, Plymouth, Stevenage and Reading. If successful, the boys 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.

A couple of years ago Ramsey Manor School in Barton narrowly missed out on qualifying for the national semifinals, so our best wishes go to Hillborough and let’s hope they can make it through the regional qualifiers and get a step closer to Wembley Stadium!


Calling all men! Do you want to lose weight? Do you lovefootball? Why don’t you join MAN V FAT and do both, with groups of like-minded men.

Be honest – hands up if you overdid it yesterday! Well, feel free for at least another week or so because we have teamed up with LiveWell Luton to run a Man v Fat League at Lea Manor Recreation Centre every Monday at 7.30pm, starting from 9th January.

MAN v FAT football is a 14-week league for any man who wants to lose weight. Games are decided on weight loss as well as results and you get 24/7 support to help you. You can join on your own, or with a mate or as a team and see how 95 per cent of MAN v FAT footballers lose weight and get fitter. There are goals bonuses available for weight loss, and with an average weight loss over the 14 weeks of 22lbs, it is a proven and effective way to lose weight while playing with your mates. The leagues will be run by the club’s Community Trust coaching staff and best of all, the whole programme is free.

To date we have over 75 players signed and registered to start in January so it promises to be a really popular event.

To sign up simply visit or call 0845 1630042 or email By the way ladies – we’ve not forgotten you and we’ll be revealing our our new female-only centres beginning next month in the Barnet programme on New Year’s Eve!


Another great year at the Trust which has seen further growth in both personnel and a big growth in the number of varied football and non-football projects we deliver to our local community.

As a registered charity our role is to represent the club in the wider community using the power of football to be at the heart of our community. We rely on raising our own funds through both our coaching activities and grant funding from the EFL, Premier League and PFA with support from the club and our main sponsor, easyjet. Additional partnerships with Active Luton, Luton Adult Learning, The Princes Trust, Luton Airport’s Youth Community Fund, Laureus Foundation and Streetgames has enabled us to both expand our existing activities and begin lots of new and exciting projects.   

As you can see from our ‘super’ infographic, we now provide over 70 free PE lessons every week to over 2,000 local school children as part of the Premier League School Sport project and easyjet Free Schools Visit Project. STRENGTHENING Our girls-only coaching continues to increase the number of girls taking part in football and we opened our first ever girls’ Player Development Centre as part of a five-year strategy of strengthening our links with 

Luton Town Ladies FC and offering girls the same opportunity as boys to be involved with the Hatters. Our growing involvement in Disability Football continues to prove hugely rewarding for both staff and participants and as well as our two men’s teams, the Hatters and Boaters, we also now coach weekly sessions at almost all of the special educational needs schools in Luton and Bedfordshire thanks to support from the Wembley National Stadium Trust. 

Our Talent Identification Centres also continue to perform well with almost 600 recruited boys in the system, and with boys trialling and playing for the academy into double figures already this season.

We’ve also increased our football tournaments this year with the Hatters Cup involving 1,200 youngsters playing at Kenilworth Road in May, as well as also involving hundreds of additional youngsters in the national Kinder+Sport Girls and Kids cup. We also have our Integration Cup for boys from Marsh Farm, Farley Hill and Lewsey Farm at the stadium, which forms an important part of our social project PL KICKS on these estates, and this season we played our first official game against QPR up at Lea Manor. SUCCESSFUL Our second airport-funded project has also been successful in establishing youth football teams in High Town for the first time in years, with teams ready to start playing in 2017 leagues next year. Luton Adult Learning are also helping us to find and train 36 new community coaches to deliver our projects with two courses in 2017 for both men and women.  

The Trust’s work was also recognised by Bedfordshire Police at the annual community cohesion awards, and more recently the Trust were voted winners in the leisure and culture section at the Luton Best awards. In addition, our social impact contribution was valued at a value to the local community of £2.5million by Substance, who are the leading experts in the social impact sector. It’s all great feedback on the work we are involved in. 

We look forward to keeping everyone updated and engaged through these pages during 2017 on all of our existing and new projects as we look to both promote Luton Town Football Club to new supporters, and also use the power of football to effect and improve the lives of as many members of our community as we can. COMMUNITY 

As promised ladies, here are the details of our new female-only footie sessions starting in a couple of weeks. We’ve got soccer circuits at Fliwick and 5-a-side at Inspire Sports Village and Lea Manor Rec in Luton.  

It’s all part of our PL Girls programme aimed at getting more girls and women into football.

FLITWICK LEISURE CENTRE: 8.15pm-9.15pm studio Starting Monday 9th January 2017

INSPIRE SPORTS VILLAGE: 7.00pm-8.00pm sports hall Starting Monday 9th January 2017

LEA MANOR RECREATION CENTRE 7-00pm-8.00pm sportshall starting Thursday 12th January 2017 

The sessions are fun-based and open to all abilities and all levels of fitness. For more information please ring the community office on 01582 737568 or drop us an email at

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