THE Colne College Rugby Academy have formed a partnership with the London Broncos.
The new agreement allows for shared resources, player supply and the creation of a pathway for Colne Academy and Eastern Rhinos Rugby League Club players to professional rugby league.
The Broncos will provide coaching support, as well development opportunities for Colne’s players and coaches.
Dan Harding and Will Blakemore, both Colne Academy and Eastern Rhinos players, have both signed professional contracts with the Broncos.
The duo are part of six new players signed to the Broncos academy.
Colne College Rugby Academy director of rugby Peter Le Marquand said: “Colne College Rugby Academy are very proud to be linked formally with London Broncos.
“This partnership allows us to have access to elite training methods and provide our students with a pathway to the professional game.
"This will be a great benefit to Colne Academy’s students and staff as well as the local community through Eastern Rhinos Rugby League Club.”
Similarly to the Broncos, Colne Rugby Academy has also recently formed a link with St Mary’s University in Twickenham to provide additional options for young rugby league players in the south of the country.
The RFL has granted Colne College Rugby Academy the status of an Accredited RFL Category Three Academy on the basis of their partnership with the Broncos.
Broncos head of youth Rob Powell said: “This Category Three accreditation by the RFL is a testament to the hard work and investment that Colne College Rugby Academy are putting into rugby, and in particular rugby league.
“We operate in a huge catchment area and this partnership allows us to help in the development of the players in the Colchester/Essex area.
"The fact that two players have been offered professional contracts and are playing in our 19s against clubs like Huddersfield shows the partnership is working.”