Pupils have designs on new rugby shirts for their school teams

Mandeville School pupils Chris Sinclair, Harry Cross, Connor Adams, Joe Slater, with rugby shirts they designed.
Mandeville School pupils Chris Sinclair, Harry Cross, Connor Adams, Joe Slater, with rugby shirts they designed.

Pupils from schools in Buckinghamshire have taken part in a workshop where they designed their team’s rugby shirt, to be produced and donated by Canterbury, the official kit supplier to England Rugby and the official partner to All Schools.

Aylesbury Vale Academy and Mandeville School were among those taking part in the workshops, part of the All Schools programme designed to help more state secondary school children play rugby and encourage new players to join local clubs.

Pupils learned about the history, heritage, values and importance of the rugby shirt and heard one of Canterbury’s experienced designers talk through the process of designing a shirt, as well as the key elements to consider when creating their own design. Canterbury will produce and supply the shirts free.

Canterbury CEO, Chris Stephenson, said: “We are passionate about working together with the RFU on the All Schools project and are looking forward to supporting the new schools by providing kit and the unique opportunity to design their own team shirt. 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.”

Aylesbury Vale Academy and Mandeville School took part in the Canterbury Kit Design workshop at Allianz Park, Hendon, on Tuesday, October 13. The fourth year of All Schools coincides with the Rugby World Cup 2015, hosted by England.

Stuart Lancaster, England Head Coach said: “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. 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.”

One pupil from each school will be invited to Twickenham Stadium to be presented with their custom designed shirt at a special ceremony on the pitch ahead of a 6 Nations game.

Schools that are new to rugby are identified in regional clusters and supported over three years with a tailored programme to meet the school’s individual needs, including links to a local club.

By establishing relationships with rugby clubs it will help the school and club to retain more players and expand the game.

Visit www.canterbury.com and www.rfu.com