NEW associate directors have been appointed at Workington Reds with responsibility for the community development of the club.

Workington AFC has appointed Simon Collins and Richard Lewthwaite as associated community directors.

The club has said the creation of the new roles reflect the importance the board places on the relationships with all elements of the game. This includes junior and senior grassroots football and the ladies game through to more recent aspects such as walking football.

Simon is a lifelong fan of Reds and he has been heavily involved in the junior level of the game, coaching Workington Juniors for over 18 years, also serving as chairman and trustee.

Simon’s brother Chris played for Reds in the 1980s and 1990s.

He said: “The route from juniors through into the development squad is now clear and achievable for more young local players to aspire to play for their home town team. Now with the opportunity of being an associate community director at Workington AFC I can help shape the direction of the Club to continue to influence future generations of junior football mad kids in becoming those fans, and family groups of supporters, that have been missing from Borough Park for far too long.”

40 year Reds fan Richard has an extensive knowledge of grassroots football having served as chairman, coach and committee member at Whitehaven Miners Social FC. He has also served as chairman of the West Cumbria Football League for the past three years.

He said: “Strengthening links with more local Grassroots clubs can only benefit the young people of our area but in reality they are the future of the Reds, whether it be on the pitch or on the terraces.”

Director Dave Bowden said: “Richard and Simon have had various discussions with myself and fellow directors Phil Norman and Chris Root and we have all been impressed with both the vision and enthusiasm they have for these roles, which is in line with our goals. In appointing them as associate directors this reflects the importance of the work they will undertake in the future. We welcome them to their new roles and look forward to working alongside them”