Bexhill College Announces New Major Partnership with Eastbourne Borough Football Club

21 February

Bexhill College Announces New Major Partnership with Eastbourne Borough Football Club

Bexhill College is looking westwards. The College is excited to announce a major new partnership with Eastbourne Borough Football Club.

Links already exist between the College and the Borough – the most senior semi-professional club in Sussex, playing their football in the National League South. Since last summer, the College has administered and coached the Eastbourne Borough Academy side for Under-19s. Now that alliance is to be turned into a full working relationship.

For the next two years, Bexhill College becomes Eastbourne Borough's main sponsor and also shirt sponsor – carrying the College name far and wide. And the joint operation extends to shared expertise and shared use of facilities: the College campus has magnificent resources for sport, while Borough's Priory Lane ground has a state of the art 3G pitch as well as excellent off-pitch facilities including classroom space. Priory Lane will become a satellite of the College in terms of football coaching as well as academic Sports Science teaching.

Already the largest Sixth Form College in the area, Bexhill College offers over 80 different academic and vocational courses including A Levels, Vocational Level 3 and Level 2 and GCSE courses. Students can take almost any combination of subjects – a very important facility for the young footballers, who often need clever timetabling to combine an Academy fixture with an A-level Maths course!

Borough chairman John Bonar explains the thinking from the football club's viewpoint. "The College is huge, expertly run and beautifully resourced. We are tapping into the very best educational expertise. Their well-established sports tuition and Sports Science courses, together with the full range of academic subjects, will be available to 16s to 19s – girls as well as boys - who will be, to use football parlance, dual registered with Bexhill and Borough.

"As many local people will know, the College also operates in association with Chelsea Football Club – so the sky's the limit! Seriously, there is a clear pathway for the Academy players to progress to National South level and then beyond. Our manager Danny Bloor has a reputation for furthering youth and is equally committed to the project.

"We have always been quite close neighbours as the crow flies – and across an extremely straight A259! And many youngsters from the Eastbourne area already attend the College. To sign up Bexhill College as the football club's principal sponsor is a real declaration of intent, on both sides. These are exciting times!”

Principal, Karen Hucker, gives her full endorsement. "The College is really pleased to be developing its relationship with Eastbourne Borough. The partnership will ensure students have access to the best post-16 Sixth Form College education in the area, with the ability to access all types of courses to suit their needs, whilst giving them the chance to play high quality football.”

Academy Coach, Sean Noble, is equally enthusiastic. "This agreement displays the commitment of both parties in providing the highest level of education and footballing opportunities for college students in the local area. Already within our first year of working together, we have seen several students being given opportunities within the Eastbourne Borough first team. And meanwhile the College's Men's first team has qualified for the final of the Sussex Cup, to be contested in March. This agreement will ensure the partnership goes from strength to strength”.

Eastbourne Borough is holding an Open Evening soon at Priory Lane for current Year 11 students, when staff from both sides, including College Academy director Sean Noble, will be present to explain options and answer questions. Further details will be posted soon.

For more information about the Sport Academies at Bexhill College, visit our website: https://www.bexhillcollege.ac.uk/docs2/about/sports_academy.shtml

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