As soon as the players are back for pre-season, the community beckons! It’s a fact that Leyton Orient has one of the best community programmes in the country and the players are an integral part of the success.
Consequently, the requests were immediate once the local council had finalised its fantastic ‘Summer Daze’ activity programme and Leyton Orient Trust (LOT) were involved!
Chris Robbins, Leader of Waltham Forest Council, said: “As part of our commitment to helping families, our Summer Daze programme offers our children and young people a wide variety of activities, from week long ‘master-classes’, full day multi-sports and performing arts programmes to half day drop-in play sessions in schools and parks. We are also part-funding 20 schools to enable them to provide holiday schemes for their pupils.”
Councillor Robbins is also a staunch Leyton Orient supporter and was only too pleased to know that members of the O’s squad would be visiting the Score Centre in Leyton at various times to help enhance the programme and create even more excitement for the young people attending.
For four full weeks LOT staff entertained around 60 children a day, providing multi-sports activities in the Score sports hall, 3G pitch and beach facilities and were joined each Thursday by O’s players who joined in the fun alongside the predictable photo call and autograph signing.
Charlie Grainger, Scott Kashket, Sam Ling, Mathieu Baudry, Dean Cox, Ollie Palmer and Sean Clohessy all took time to visit the centre during August to meet the kids, answer a variety of questions and sign an assortment of articles including trainers, t-shirts and caps whilst handing out complimentary match tickets for upcoming games at Brisbane Road.
And some lucky youngsters even had the opportunity to pop over the road to the Matchroom Stadium, revelling in the thrill of walking out of the player’s tunnel and sitting in the pitch side dugouts alongside the Orient stars.
Phil Rudling, LOT Deputy Chief Executive said: “To have the players supporting the events is a bit like the icing on the cake for the young participants. We tell them players will be popping in but not when so they are excited throughout the week culminating in a frenzy for autographs! To be fair, the support from the club and players in particular has been excellent over the past few years and this really enables us to enhance our programmes a deliver that extra something special.”
If you would like to know more about the work of Leyton Orient Trust, visit their webpage www.leytonorient.com/club/lotrust/