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30 September 2021

Club marks National Sporting Heritage Day

The Club, Community Trust and Ipswich Town Heritage Society are delighted to announce that they will be partnering to develop an educational programme for Partner Schools based on the Club’s proud history, present and future.

The announcement comes on National Sporting Heritage Day, a day organised by the Sporting Heritage organisation. This year the theme is ‘Inspire, Share and Celebrate’, focussing on activities and learning across the generations. This includes inspiring young people to learn about their sporting heroes and historic sporting moments.

The programme is inspired by St Helen’s Primary School’s initiative to develop the skills and knowledge of seven-to-nine year-old pupils through activities which covered the history of the Club and the town of Ipswich. The ITFC Heritage Society and Community Trust worked closely with the school to support the project, which provided fun and challenging opportunities for the youngsters to study subjects key to the National Curriculum including Geography, History, Art and English whilst linking them to football. 

As well as learning at school, the St Helen’s pupils walked to Portman Road for a morning of Town-related activities.  This included sketching the statues of Sir Alf Ramsey and Sir Bobby Robson – the pupils have previously made models of the statues following a video message from sculptor Sean Hedges-Quinn.  A mini tour of the ground was followed by a session with Club archivist Pat Godbold and ITFC Heritage Society’s Elizabeth and Tim Edwards, where the pupils were shown artefacts including a replica of the FA Cup, old football boots and balls.  The pupils also enjoyed a football session on the fieldturf. Finally, Club CEO Mark Ashton met with them for a Q&A session. 

Mark Ashton with St Helen's 2.JPG

It is planned that these activities will be included and expanded within the future programme, tailored to the individual needs of each school and group. The programme will also be adapted to create opportunities for the Trust and Club’s work with older fans in a similar way.

The Club's PR manager, Dan Palfrey commented: “This is a great way for us to extend our schools activities into new areas of the core curriculum. The pilot programme with St Helen’s school was fun and informative for both the Club and school, and we look forward to working with new Partner Schools in the future.”

ITFC Community Trust’s Schools’ Development Manager Mike Phillips said: “We hope that our Partner Schools will find this an exciting way to engage pupils with the history of the Club and surrounding areas.” 

ITFC Heritage Society’s Elizabeth Edwards said: “It is wonderful to be able to demonstrate – to pupils of all ages - how there is a shared history of club and town, and how the two grew and changed together.  Being able to show many historic artefacts, and talk about the experience of following football many decades ago is also a great way to engage youngsters.”

If your school is interested in having the Trust working within your school then please contact Mike Phillips on

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