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WATCH: Ipswich Town defender surprises young footballers at summer camp

PUBLISHED: 11:30 07 August 2019

Kids enjoyed meeting one of their heroes, Luke Woolfenden, at the Ipswich Town FC training camp at Gainsborough Sports Centre   Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Kids enjoyed meeting one of their heroes, Luke Woolfenden, at the Ipswich Town FC training camp at Gainsborough Sports Centre Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Archant

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 attended the summer camp in Ipswich   Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNAround 60 children attended the summer camp in Ipswich Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

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.

Kids enjoyed meeting one of their heroes, Luke Woolfenden, at the Ipswich Town FC training camp at Gainsborough Sports Centre   Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNKids enjoyed meeting one of their heroes, Luke Woolfenden, at the Ipswich Town FC training camp at Gainsborough Sports Centre Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

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 academy graduate held a special signing session for the youngsters   Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNThe academy graduate held a special signing session for the youngsters Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

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.

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