Supporter to Reporter celebration event – Upton Park

[13 Jul 2015]

On Friday, myself and Kerry Baron travelled to London with Elisee Manzi, Holly Giles and Kieran Wall to attend the ‘Supporter to Reporter’ celebration event at West Ham’s football ground. The day was fantastic and the students were amazing!

It was an early start, kicking off with a 7am train to London but the students kept us entertained with their questions about timezones and Geography questions about the Midlands and Scotland (Kieran thought that they were close to each other. We then arrived in the capital to the hustle and bustle of the Underground, which the students were fascinated by “Miss, how do you know where to go?” 

We arrived at Upton Park in plenty of time and got settled into our seats for the day. The afternoon started with us doing some group activities about what they had learnt from the programme and then Kieran decided to interview Kerry about her thoughts on the programme. This was hilarious as she was only attending as the first aider, however Kerry did a brilliant job and handled the questions really well. 

We then got to go on a tour of the stadium which began with sitting in the away dressing room. This was very uncomfortable and had a very unpleasant smell, it is no wonder that Hull City didn’t play that well there! The smell of sewers and hammers in the tiles is enough to put anybody off! We then moved into the home dressing room, which was much better. They had lockers, enough showers for all the players and a tactics board!

The final bit of the tour came when we walked through the tunnel and sat in the stands, this was a brilliant experience and I don’t know who was more excited, myself or the students. The tour guides explained why each stand had its name, the east stand is nicknamed the ‘chicken run’ because before the days of seating, the fans used to run up and down the stand following the football but would flap their arms in the process, this is why Kevin Nolan dances like a chicken when he scores a goal. 

After the tour, we headed back to the celebration where there was a Q&A session with Annie Zaidi (Under 11s coach at Leicester City) and Anwar Uddin (Former West Ham player). Our very own Elisee took part in the Q&A session and he was fantastic! 

After a long day, we headed back to Kings Cross, got a cheeky McDonalds for tea and waited patiently for our train. The students were amazed at the stampede of commuters running for their train, we felt like we were in the scene from the Lion King when Mufasa dies…

After a wait of about 1 hour, we safely boarded our train and headed back to Hull.

I think my highlight of the day was noticing that Thomas Ferens Academy were the only school to be used on the programme that all schools were given for the day. 

The day was incredible and the students were a credit to the Academy. This programme has done so much for the students that they want to become mentors for next year. They were truly inspirational and I was very proud to be a part of it. 

I have attached a photograph from the day and I have placed the rest in the English Folder under ‘S2R celebration’

If you see the students, please congratulate them.