Monday, 11 March 2013

Signing for the Daggers - a special announcement

I have been a lifelong supporter of the mighty Dagenham & Redbridge FC, as some of you might know. So when I had the opportunity just before Christmas to sign copies of ABIDE WITH ME at the Club Shop, I didn't think it could get any better than that.

 Signing copies of AWM at the home of the Mighty Daggers

But it has.

A couple of days ago I received official confirmation that I have been appointed the very first Writer in Residence at the club.

My role will be to work within the club's community programme - going out to schools in the borough, promoting the importance of literacy to the kids, perhaps running a few writing competitions, and also some workshops. 

I am, of course, immensely proud, to be working with the club in such a role.

The London Borough of Barking and Dagenham is one of the most deprived areas of the city. To have the opportunity to work in the borough as part of the Daggers community programme is, for me, an immense privilege.

My thanks go out to Darren Laws at Caffeine Nights, Teresa Parish - the club's Community Liaison Officer, and Steve Thompson - Managing Director at the Mighty Daggers.

Here is the official press release:

Novelist, Ian Ayris, Signs on as Writer in Residence at ‘The Daggers’

Press release

Dagenham & Redbridge Football Club has announced the signing of its first writer in residence; crime and sports fiction novelist and lifelong Daggers fan, Ian Ayris will join the club from January to work with the club in a number of community related projects to bring writing and football together.

Ian has been going to games at Victoria Road for over 30 years is delighted to be playing a part at the club and in the community. 

Dagenham & Redbridge Football Club managing director, Steve Thompson said, “Ian is a great fan of the club and we are happy to be working with him bringing football and increasing literary skills into the community. This will involve projects in schools and at the club engaging young people and fans of the club.”

Ian said, “Football clubs have a lot of influence with young people and in the community in general, especially clubs like The Daggers who are still very much a family club with family values. So it’s great to be here at the club I love and be able to work with them giving something back. I am looking forward to working with the club not just in schools but also on a project charting the history of the club with fans which we hope to produce as a book.”

Steve Thompson continued, “As a club we want to reach kids who have an interest in football at all levels. Not all will want to play or have the ability to make it as a professional footballer, but by making the most of their education they can broaden their options. Some may want to write about football or just improve their writing skills, and that’s where we as a club working with Ian, can give them inspiration.”

Ian’s novel, Abide with Me published by Caffeine Nights Publishing, hit the number one spot in Amazon’s sports fiction chart and is still the highest rated title in that section with over 50 reviews, including 44 5 star reviews. Part East End crime fiction, part passage of rites tale with football at its heart, Abide with Me is a moving tale charting the life of two boys given a raw deal in life. 


1 comment:

  1. As I've said before, Ian, you're (among many other good things) one of the best sports writers I've read. Good on you, mate.