PL4Sport Launch - Fulham FC
The formal launch of the Fulham Premier League 4 Sport club was held on the 23rd March at the Fulham Training ground in Motspur Park. Young people from Epsom & Ewell High School, Epsom Primary School and Raynes Park High School attended with their teachers and were treated to an afternoon of fun. Fulham FC were represented by John Pantsil and Ricardo and the premiership footballers threw themselves whole heartedly into the new sport.
The badminton session culminated in a doubles between Hayley Connor (former England International) and Toby Penty (current England No 1 at Under 19) and the two football stars entertained the crowd with their outrageous diving! One of the PL4S Ambassadors, was asked to speak at the Fulham launch and found it a very daunting prospect sitting next to an Olympic Silver medal winning judo star.
The Fulham Premier League 4 Sport clubs are based at three Epsom secondary schools, Epsom & Ewell High, Rosebery and Glyn. The intention is to open a fourth club at Blenheim in September. With the collaboration of Ebbisham Badminton Club which has Performance Centre status and the untiring efforts of the two coaches, Marie Benedict and Marcel Colombage the clubs have grown over the past year. Currently there are a total of 115 students registered with PL4S and this seems to be growing.
In December 2009, Ebbisham Badminton Club hosted the first Winter Festival which took the form of a tournament, a demonstration game by some of Surrey’s County junior players with refreshments provided by Fulham FC. This was repeated in the Spring with over 30 children attending. During the summer, due to a lack of courts at the three schools because of exams, a combined summer session has been set up at Ebbisham averaging between 20 and 24 children each week ranging from Years 4 to 11.
Three Ambassadors have been selected to support the clubs and all three were successful in completing the UKCC level 1 Award. The Leadership Academy has also provided for 8 young people to complete the Badminton Junior Helper Award.