Manchester pupils from select schools will be able to design their team’s rugby shirt in conjunction with the All Schools programme and kit suppliers Canterbury.
Students from Barlow RC High School, Co-operative Academy, Manchester Academy and Newall Green High School will participate in Kit Design Workshops held at Widnes RFC on Wednesday September 23.
The All Schools programme was launched in 2012 by the Rugby Football Union (RFU) in conjunction with the Rugby Football Foundation (RFF) in an effort to encourage secondary school-children to get involved with the sport both at school and at local clubs.
Canterbury, the official kit supplier to England Rugby and All Schools partner, will run the workshops across the country. Participants will be walked through the design process by an experienced Canterbury designer as well as learning of the importance of the shirt.
“The match shirt is a source of huge pride for the players. When they are presented with it before an international it is a very special moment for them and the whole squad,” said England head coach Stuart Lancaster.
“By teaching these pupils who are new to the game the core values of rugby union and the history of the shirt, I’m sure that these school teams will share the same passion for their own design.”
The shirts created by the pupils will then be produced and supplied to the school’s team free of charge by Canterbury. Following on from this, one pupil from each school will then be invited to a pre-match ceremony on the field at Twickenham, where they will be presented with their custom shirt prior to an RBS 6 Nations game next year.
The addition of the Manchester schools to All Schools has meant that the programme has reached its goal of having 400 schools on-board by the 2015 World Cup. However the initiative will continue to expand as they target 750 schools participating by the time the 2019 World Cup comes around.
Chris Stephenson, CEO of Canterbury said: “We are passionate about working together with the RFU on the All Schools project.
“It’s been fantastic to see the impact rugby has had on the students taking part over the last three years and encouraging that the schools are building such strong links with their local clubs.”
For further information on the All Schools programme visit http://www.englandrugby.com/allschools.