BWFC visited the University of Bolton


The British Ambassador to the UAE, British Council, English Premier League & Bolton Wanderers Football Club visits University of Bolton’s Ras Al Khaimah Campus.

A football delegation from the English Premier League and Bolton Wanderers Football Club visited the University of Bolton, Ras Al Khaimah Campus on Thursday 20 October 2011.

H.E. Dominic Jermey the British Ambassador to the UAE accompanied the delegation and addressed both students and staff at a packed out gathering in the state-of-the-art campus convention hall.

Sir David Richards – Chairman of English Premier League and Phil Gartside – Chairman of Bolton Wanderers Football Club, spoke about the plans for a sporting academy tying both sports and education and the combination that can serve the community of Ras Al Khaimah.

UK Ambassador to the UAE Dominic Jermey said:

“This visit is a clear demonstration of the wonderful links between the UK and UAE in both the world of education and sports. I am proud of the world class education that Bolton University and other British academic institutions are providing in the UAE. I am equally thrilled by the love of sport shared by both nations and I am sure Bolton Wanderers Football Club will be impressed by the strides taken by sports clubs here in Ras Al Khaimah and across the Emirates”

Dr. George Holmes via a telephone link from the UK said he wants the University of Bolton in keeping with its internationalisation strategy to seek opportunities such as this with Government of Ras Al Khaimah, Bolton Wanderers and the English Premier League.

Sir David Richards spoke about the opportunities that the English Premier League can bring to the shores of Ras Al Khaimah through the University of Bolton in engaging with the social fabric of the UAE.

The delegation visited the Ruler’s palace and was warmly welcomed by His Highness Sheikh Dr Saud Bin Saqr Al Qassimi, Member of the UAE Supreme Council and Ruler of Ras al Khaimah accompanied by H.E. Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saqr Al Qassimi, Chairman of Emirates Football Club.

His Highness Sheikh Saud welcomed the developments and outlined how the marriage between sports and education can bring many opportunities for integration and participation. His Highness added that Bolton Wanderers Football Club in partnership with the University of Bolton, Ras Al Khaimah Campus can foster the development towards a sporting village with professional and state-of-the-art facilities in Ras al Khaimah.

Dr. Sudhir Kartha – Chairman of KES group and WINC complemented the guidance offered by His Highness and spoke of commitment to the University and Ras Al Khaimah in setting up a sixth form college that enables students to integrate sports with learning.

Phil Gartside is in the process of developing a proposal for review by H.E. Sheikh Ahmed on how such a link between Bolton Wanderers and the Emirates Club enables access to even better coaching and mentorship for Emirates Club and its players.

HE Sheikh Ahmed suggested that this could be an excellent opportunity to broaden the appeal from Emirates Football Club and its constituents.

HE Dominic Jermey commented that the University of Bolton and the work is seeks to do in support for Ras al Khaimah is exceptional and would be encouraged by the British Embassy.

Kate Owen – Deputy Director British Council wants to see the development of an English Teaching Centre in Ras Al Khaimah that benefits both the students at the University of Bolton, Ras Al Khaimah Campus and the community at large.

Provost for Off Campus Division for the University of Bolton, Dr Zubair Hanslot, said: ‘At our RAK campus we are looking at the potential of sports science, health and sports-related programmes for the UAE. We are delighted to receive an input from the delegation as they have direct professional experience in making this happen.’

Sports science courses at the University of Bolton will be based in the £31 million Bolton One health, leisure and research centre which is set to open in spring 2012.

‘This is also an opportunity for our University to strengthen the good relationship we have with Bolton Wanderers,’ said Dr Hanslot.

Dr. Kartha added. ‘It is a fantastic opportunity and the campus is very pleased to receive such a high profile visit from English football, supported by Government of Ras Al Khaimah, The British Embassy and also British Council.’

There are also plans to have a world class football player visiting the campus for one week, giving coaching skills and guidance on football to students at the RAK campus.

Visiting the campus were: HE Dominic Jermey – the British Ambassador to the UAE, Chairman BWFC, Phil Gartside; Chairman of the FA Premier League, Sir David Richards; Project Manager Bolton Wanderers Institute of Sports, Andrew Watkins; Director Sporting Chances, partner of Bolton Wanderers; Aden Durde, and Director Sporting Chances, partner of Bolton Wanderers; James Tucker, Deputy Director of British Council, Dubai; Kate Owen (ends)

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