Today (Friday 1st May) we would have been at Armfield Academy, down on the astrotruf, enjoying the sunshine and preparing ourselves for our second Jimmy Armfield Memorial Trophy Tournament.
This tournament is about using the power of football to bring people together and celebrate the career and life of one of Blackpool’s biggest icons and footballing legends, Sir Jimmy Armfield.
Primary schools across Blackpool are invited to bring a football team of Year 3 and 4 pupils to take part. The day involves lots of football for the pupils, through competitive fixtures against other schools and additional activities such as our inflatable dart board and kick-up challenge (where pupils are challenged to do a collective total of 627 kick-ups, the number of appearances Jimmy made for Blackpool), all of which are tied in to creating awareness of who Jimmy was as a player and as a person.
Duncan, one of Jimmy’s two sons, volunteers his own time to attend the day and talk to the pupils in a briefing before the tournament starts, talking about his dad’s values, his achievements and tales of how he once chased donkeys on the beach to keep up his fitness.
Whilst the football is playing, Duncan allows pupils to see and even hold some of Jimmy’s most treasured items, such as his first England cap and his CBE medal. Once the football is over, Duncan presents the two finalists with their medals and trophies, wrapping up a fantastic day of events.
There is a particular reason why we chose 1st May as our preferred date; it was the date of his last game for his beloved Blackpool FC in front of over 30,000 people. It was also the date that his statue was unveiled outside the corner of the south stand of the stadium, which is also named after him.
To see some pictures and read last year’s tournament write-up, click on the below link:
Although we can’t host today’s tournament as planned, we still want the next generation of Blackpool fans to learn all about Jimmy and we’ve created some activities to help them do that.
The Jimmy Armfield quiz – Can you become a football legend by taking on these problem solving questions? (aimed at year 3/4 level)
The Jimmy Armfield wordsearch – 15 words to find, including the five Jimmy Armfield values.