Peterborough United striker Jack Marriott has inspired budding sports stars at Higham Ferrers Junior School after officially opening their new all-weather outdoor sports and play area.
Pupils jumped at the opportunity to speak to the League One striker with one talented pupil, also called Jack Marriott, being given the once-in-a-lifetime chance to play against his namesake and idol on the new pitch.
Named the ‘Super Skills Arena’ by enthusiastic pupils, the all-weather pitch has been created to help get young people more engaged with sport.
The project was funded with the help of local skip hire firm, Mick George Ltd, who donated over £21k to the school.
Football star, Jack, who lives in Northamptonshire, explained that he had recently become a father and was happy to see that ‘such a wonderful facility has been created for the youngsters’ so they can ‘be kids.’
Chris Hill, Headteacher at Higham Ferrers Junior School, said: “Encouraging young people to engage with sport and keep active is incredibly important. This pitch really opens up the sporting opportunities we are able to offer not just our pupils, but also people from the wider community.”
“We’re incredibly grateful to Jack for taking time out to come and inspire our pupils, and to Mick George Ltd for helping us to make this fantastic new sports facility a reality.
“It would also be remiss not to mention our School Business Manager, Jo Longland, who has worked tirelessly behind the scenes to make this facility happen. We are all incredibly grateful to her!”
Sean Feeley from Mick George Ltd, which helped to fund the new facility, added: “It’s brilliant to see the pitch open and being enjoyed by Higham Ferrers pupils.
“As our business continues to grow, we’re pleased to have the opportunity to give back to the local community.”