Corona can’t stop the ceremony – Great Harwood Rovers find innovative way to celebrate new sponsorship deal

The club’s home venue was crowned ‘Moorland Arena’ during a zoom ceremony with MP Sara Britcliffe, Moorland Headteacher, Jonathan Harrison, Miles Parkinson, leader of Hyndburn Borough Council, and Mark Pickup, Great Harwood Rovers Trustee.

Moorland Private School have chosen to support the club moving forwards as part of their community initiative to give back to the local area.

Jonathan Harrison, Moorland’s Headteacher, said:

“During this pandemic it would be easy to step back from our community responsibilities, however we want to continue to expand our support of local grass roots clubs as much as possible during this difficult time. We see a great synergy with Great Harwood Rovers and our own International Football Academy, especially as again Moorland School has lifted another ISFA National Cup victory.

These plans have been in motion for many months and lock down won’t stop us celebrating! We need regional partners for when our students, many of whom are within local professional CAT 1 & 2 Academies, return to play friendlies so we are very excited by the opportunities and the relationship for sports progression ahead.”

Sara Britcliffe, MP for Hyndburn and Haslingden, added:

“It was an honour to be part of the ceremony. Ordinarily there would be a ribbon cutting and lots of photo’s, but I am glad we found a way to celebrate using video conferencing technology and could come together and virtually honour the newly crowned Moorland Arena. I am grateful to Moorland for investing in future generations so that the club can continue their great work which helps so many people.”

Great Harwood Rovers underpin 28 community teams, have over 60 volunteers and in excess of 300 players, in addition to visiting teams. As part of an £800,000 investment in 2017 their new ground has 4 pitches, a purpose-built pavilion and facilities such as catering, meeting, education and changing rooms.

Mark Pickup, Great Harwood Rovers Trustee was grateful for the partnership and thanked all involved, “We have worked tirelessly since our formation in 1975 to deliver a facility the town deserves, with the help of Murray Dawson from Scott Dawson Advertising bringing us together, this sponsorship deal has been made possible.

Once lock down is over we have lots of plans to get involved further in our community through get-fit initiatives and charity drives. Moorland are an ideal fit for us, we encompass the same values around helping young people develop an interest in sports and keeping

active. This sponsorship also helps us on our way to achieving the dream of 4G pitches in the future too!”

Cllr Miles Parkinson OBE, Leader of Hyndburn Council said:

“It’s so pleasing to see Moorland School supporting the work Great Harwood Rovers do across not just in Great Harwood but provide across the Hyndburn community. This follows on from the creation of the current facilities by the Council with Partners and Organisations to give the long-held aspiration of Great Harwood Rovers they have today. I am sure this will not stop here for Great Harwood Rovers to develop the facilities even further in future years.

Moorland International Football Academy’s Head Coach, Charlie Jackson, is Hyndburn born and bred, which influenced the decision to support the Great Harwood club. Moorland are also the official education partner for Blackburn Rovers Football Club, plus have links to Manchester City as their East Lancashire Training Centre of Excellence. The school has produced many professional players and has produced hundreds of Academy players for clubs such as Manchester United, Manchester City, Blackburn Rovers, Burnley FC, Preston FC and even our local Accrington Stanley.

Jonathan Harrison added:

“We are accepting applications for talented individuals to join our International Football Academy and encourage parents to get in touch if they would like more information or a virtual tour of our facilities. Thank you to everyone involved in the virtual naming ceremony, we are looking forward to what the future holds for this new partnership.”

Image Caption: (Clockwise from Top Left) Murray Dawson, Chairman of #AmazingAccrington and Managing Director of Scott Dawson Advertising; Jonathan Harrison, Headteacher, Moorland Private School; Miles Parkinson, Leader of Hyndburn Borough Council; Mark Pickup, Trustee, Great Harwood Rovers; and Sara Britcliffe, MP for Hyndburn & Haslingden