WATCH: Ipswich Town defender surprises young footballers at summer camp
PUBLISHED: 11:30 07 August 2019
Aspiring footballers practising their skills in the hope of becoming the next Ipswich Town stars were treated to a surprise visit from a very special guest at a summer camp.
Around 60 children, who were attending the training sessions as part of Ipswich Borough Council's summer holiday iCard scheme, had a kick about with Town player Luke Woolfenden at Gainsborough and Whitton Sports Centre on Tuesday.
Central defender Woolfenden, who played in Town's 1-0 away win against Burton last weekend, also held a special signing session with the youngsters.
It was one of 13 summer camps delivered by Ipswich Town and Ipswich Borough Council during the school holidays as part of the iCard scheme.
This gives children aged from five to 16 access to more than 400 sports sessions - including swimming, archery, football, basketball, keep-fit events and roller-skating at council run gyms, swimming pools and leisure centres.
Bryony Rudkin, the council's deputy leader, said: "We are putting on hundreds of events at our sports facilities and free activities in the community and are repeating our free summer holiday iCard offer to local children.
"This is a very exciting partnership and will enable both of us to deliver a lot more activities and help in our aim to get young people more active - and occupied - especially during the summer break."
More than 20,000 free iCards have been handed out to Ipswich youngsters, in a bid to keep them healthy, occupied and away from gang activity during the six-week summer holidays.
Last year the scheme, which cost £100,000, resulted in nearly 13,000 sign-ups, 18,501 visits to Crown Pools and 7,000 gym visits.
The football camps also provide free lunches for all participants, particularly those receiving free school meals, in order to ensure that those young people receive a healthy meal during the day in the summer holidays.
Woolfenden, 20, is an Ipswich Town academy graduate who has previous Football league experience having been out on loan at Bromley and Swindon Town.