Shrewsbury Town in the Community helps to drive the participation of junior football in Lakelands Academy.

Ever since the Shrewsbury Town in the Community (STitC) and Lakelands Academy partnership began, staff have been working in collaboration to improve the participation of both boys and girls in extra curricular sporting activities. With over 413 lessons delivered, 108 pupils attending a Shrewsbury Town FC first team match and an average weekly attendance of 47 girls to extra curricular activities, football is causing a buzz in the corridors of Lakelands Academy.

This is in no small part down to the dedication of STitC’s coaching team and the persistence of Lakelands Academy staff to encourage a healthy lifestyle for their students. STitC coach Harry Warren has become integral to the school in not only raising the standards of football and increasing participation but also as a vehicle for good; an advocate for a healthy living and the promotion of exercise for all.

Due to the relationships that Harry has been able to forge with students, the partnership has been able to grow, allowing STitC the opportunity to assist Lakelands Academy in providing the highest levels of pastoral care. Harry has become a familiar face around the school, supporting students at every opportunity.

When COVID-19 forced the country to lockdown, the partnership evolved. Online lessons and resources replaced traditional face to face delivery.  The mental well-being of students were rightly at the forefront of thoughts. The partnership became more than football. For those children of ‘key-worker’ families, who still attended school, Harry was an ever-present fixture; offering daily PE sessions to engage all who attended.

Doors reopened and both STitC and Lakelands Academy returned with new vigour, eager to provide new opportunities to the students who missed out on so much. The next 6 months will once again prove a challenge but STitC will continue to Connect, Support and Inspire.


“Since we have returned in September, Shrewsbury Town in the Community have continued to have a massive impact with us. It’s not just raising the standards of football in the school, it’s increasing participation. We have a much higher participation now, that across boys, girls and all ages. From a pastoral point of view, Harry offers a lot more, he works with children in between lessons and supports them. He’s become a real member of the Lakelands Academy family” – Andy Parkhurst (Lakelands Academy Assistant Headmaster)

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