Glowing report after first year of Tonbridge Angels Academy

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SIGNS OF PROGRESS: Regan Bowden (left) and Ned Snowden-Lewis join the first team

Regan Bowden and Ned Snowden-Lewis were called up after being involved in the 2-0 defeat of Ebbsfleet United in the Kent Senior Cup quarter-finals.

And they have been joined by Josh Stirman, who had a trial with Premier League club Leicester City which was unfortunately curtailed due to injury.

Academy manager Tommy Parkinson, the Angels club captain, said : “It’s a fantastic achievement for both of them, they have worked hard and deserved their opportunities over the last two games.

“It shows there is a genuine pathway for youngsters at Tonbridge Angels.”

Open trials for this year’s Tonbridge Angels Academy intake will take place at Hugh Christie School on White Cottage Road on Thursday and Friday February 21-22 from 10am to 1pm.

FOX IN THE BOX: Josh Stirman has had trials with Leicester City

The new academy allows students to develop their footballing potential while at the same time providing nationally recognised qualifications (A Levels and/or a BTEC Level 3 in sport)and gaining FA level 1 and 2 coaching badges.

The programme, which has been running for a year, is led by Parkinson and Jamie Coyle, manager of Dartford FC First XI in National South, both of whom are UEFA A Licence coaches.

As well as daily training and classes at Hugh Christie, students compete in the National Under-19 Youth League or Kent Academies League as well as the FA Youth Cup.

“The academy is going better than I had anticipated,” said Parkinson. “The standard of player we have attracted has been impressive and we are going from strength to strength.

“We have created a fun learning environment where students can gain nationally recognised qualifications alongside training and playing daily. We’ve had some real success so far.”

In its first year the scheme has achieved a 100 per cent pass rate at BTEC level 3 sport.

Four players made their first-team debuts against Dartford and Ebbsfleet United, with eight playing for the Angels Under-21 side.

For more information about taking part, visit or email

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