Connecting with the community

Community clubs are the heartbeat of Rugby League. 

Wigan Warriors Community Foundation acknowledges that all clubs have had a tough time and have struggled in different ways in the last two years due to the pandemic.

The Warriors are committed to helping clubs where possible and most recently have launched a community club ambassador programme – consisting of 21 clubs. 

Over the years, there have been countless youngsters who have progressed from amateur Rugby League clubs to signing for Wigan’s Academy system and representing the first team. Community clubs are the cornerstone of the development of players and Wigan Warriors prides itself on having a strong homegrown crop of players.

To continue that the Club are improving their engagement and relationship with local community clubs and their team coaches by hosting monthly events at Robin Park Arena. Since July, there have been six sessions – ranging from coaching education and development to Q&A sessions with the likes of Executive Director Kris Radlinski, the new 2022 Coaching Team including Head Coach Matt Peet, first team players and Community Foundation coaches.

Executive Director, Kris Radlinski, said: “We are committed to strengthening our relationships with the community game. The global pandemic has been terribly hard on everybody and we originally started the programme to listen and see how we can help clubs that were struggling.

“It has developed into something much stronger where we welcome all clubs in on a monthly basis and talk about different elements of the game. Our Head Coach Matt Peet has spoken about the community clubs being the lifeblood of the sport and he is absolutely right. Without the efforts of hundreds of volunteers, we would have no professional game.”

Danny Fullerton, Community Development Manager, said: “We’re delighted with the way the programme has evolved and the positive relationships that have been forged with all the community club ambassadors. 

“This programme has been designed to connect with all community clubs and offer high quality coach education and support for all community clubs – delivered in a practical and interactive way.”

Head of Nutrition Darren Marsh, who is also heavily involved in the running of the programme – added: “All community club coaches benefit from having free exclusive access to the experience and advice available from the Wigan Warriors Coaching Team, with new ideas and advice to take back to their own clubs and inspire the next generation. 

“We look forward to continuing our relationships and expanding the project with more community clubs in 2022.” 

2021 has seen the following clubs involved in the ambassador programme: 

  • Hindley 
  • Wigan Bulldogs 
  • Ashton Bears 
  • Chorley Panthers
  • Springview
  • Wigan St Patricks 
  • Wigan St Judes
  • Westhoughton Lions 
  • Heysham Atoms 
  • Leigh Miners 
  • Leigh East
  • Accrington Wildcats 
  • Ince Rose Bridge 
  • Golborne Parkside 
  • Orrell St James 
  • Shevington Sharks 
  • Wigan St Cuthberts 
  • Wigan RUFC 
  • Blackpool Scorpions 
  • Leyland Warriors 
  • Hindpool Tigers

In 2022, the Club aims to grow and enhance the programme with more regular free high quality coaching seminars and a variety of exciting content for all Wigan Warriors community club ambassadors. 

If your community club would like to have exclusive access to the programme, please contact [email protected].