Truro School has announced a new partnership with leading football development centre, Saints Southwest.

Saints Southwest is an official club partner of Southampton Football Club and provides education, community, football and sporting provisions across the South West.

As an official Saints Southwest partner, Truro School pupils, as well as keen footballers from around Cornwall, will benefit from the club’s commitment to ‘developing potential for all’ both on and off the pitch, providing premier level training and opportunity. Truro School will be the hub and heartbeat for all Saints Southwest provisions and programmes across Cornwall. Young people aged 2-19 years will have the opportunities to further develop their football through a proven and detailed training programme, utilising Truro School’s facilities for training and matches.

Building on the current coaching set-up at Truro School, which last year saw the school’s Under 16s team crowned joint winners of the Independent School’s FA National Shield, the unique programme will provide pathways for boys and girls, taking them to the next level, as well as opening doors to a wide range of roles within the industry, such as coaching, performance analysis and research.

Delivered through daily sessions, alongside classroom analysis, gym work and individual development programmes, the programme is designed to complement their GCSE, A- Levels and C-Tech lessons to produce well-rounded, balanced individuals.

New chair of governors, Richard Thomas, said: “This is an exciting announcement to begin the new academic year with and further demonstrates Truro School’s commitment to providing a strong sporting legacy, and finding new ways to expand sporting opportunities for all pupils.”

Mark Titchard, director of Saints Southwest added: “It’s with great pleasure the Saints Southwest join forces with Truro School. A proactive partnership built on key values, attention to detail and professionalism. Saints Southwest have a proven track record in developing people both on and off the pitch and pride ourselves on being able to offer opportunities for many young people to take part in sport, football and reach their full potential.”

The partnership isn’t built on ‘making professional footballers’ but creating an engaging football development programme and providing opportunities where young people can learn, progress and be accountable are shared objectives of the partnership.

Alex Watson, Saints Southwest and Truro School’s lead coach, said: “Myself and the team coaches will do everything we can to ensure that our young players have the best experiences possible in training and matches. With the amazing support, resources and facilities at Saints Southwest and Truro School, we will be able to provide opportunities for many young people at community, grassroots and county levels to become better players and learners.

“I will hopefully be able to make use of my experience as a player, coach and coach educator to add value to our young aspiring coach workforce.”

Saints Southwest and Truro School are now accepting applications for both places with the football development programme and full-time football education programmes.

The programme commences in October 2020.