Football academy allows young players to learn about the Christian faith in Lowestoft

Message on the Ball is a new football academy that has been launched by London Road Baptist Church.

Message on the Ball is a new football academy that has been launched by London Road Baptist Church. Picture: Mick Howes. - Credit: Archant

A new weekly football academy is allowing young people to improve their skills and also learn about the Christian faith in Lowestoft.

Youngsters taking part in the new football academy. Picture: Mick Howes.

Youngsters taking part in the new football academy. Picture: Mick Howes. - Credit: Archant

Message On The Ball has been launched by the team at London Road Baptist Church – with the aim of encouraging players in school years 7 to 11 to develop their game – as well as understanding Christian and sporting values.

The academy was the idea of head coach Ashley Langner and youth minister the Rev Emily Twigg – and a large number of participants have already signed up to the weekly sessions – held on a Thursday evening between 7.30pm and 8.30pm at Kirkley and Pakefield Football Club.

Where the academy differs from others in the area is that the young people do not participate in competitive matches at the weekend.

'I had a vision, coming to this church about a year ago, that I wanted to start a football academy,' said Mr Langner – who previously coached at Beccles FC for five years.


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'There is a need in the local area to coach football without the worry of a Saturday or Sunday competitive game – which some young people would not want to engage in.'

The sessions, which will be running all year round, cost £1 each week.

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The Rev Twigg added: 'A lot of the children aren't of a Christian background and the way the Christian message is put across is through the context of sport.'

For more information, or to book, contact Emily on 01502 514091 or emily.twigg@londonroad.org.uk

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