Business and pleasure can form a winning combination..... as headteacher Jim Hourigan has proved.
For the soccer-mad Penwortham high school boss has managed to combine his passion for his beloved Everton with drumming up the skills of local youngsters.
Priory Academy teamed up with the Premier League club to host an Everton Development Centre where aspiring footballers aged between six and 12 spent an an hpur and a half every week using the school’s facilities.
A life-long toffees supporter and season ticket holder Jim said; “ It came about through my links with Everton,
It’s great to have any professional football club here but it does help that I am an Everton fan!
Having former boss David Moyes’s dad as a pal also played a big part as Jim added: “It’s for primary school children from the area but also for children as far afield as Blackpool and Burnley.
“Penwortham Priory will also benefit in the future.
“Our junior sports leaders will get the chance to be involved with some of the coaching, we will help to arrange football tournaments and hopefully get speakers from Everton Football Club to the Academy to talk about their experiences and motivation.
“We have great facilities here with the all weather pitch, the car parking and also catering facilities which is vital for the Development Centres.
“It’s superb to link up with a Premier League club and extra special for me that it’s the Toffees”
Everton Academy Recruitment Officer Ray Redmond said: “The link up came through David Moyes’s senior, whose son manages Manchester United.
“David Moyes senior is a scout at Everton and a good friend of Penwortham Priory’s headteacher Jim and they talked about using the facilities here.
I had a look and they are ideal.
“They are great facilities in a good location, the staff support us and everyone is friendly.
“It’s important to us to have centres like this where we can look for young talented footballers.”