North East Wales

Hawarden High School 'proud' of international footballers

Gary Speed, Michael Owen, Danny Ward and Andy Dorman Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Gary Speed, Michael Owen, Danny Ward and Andy Dorman

Hundreds of schools will be watching Wales take on England in Euro 2016 on Thursday, but few can boast of producing four international players.

Hawarden High School, in Flintshire, taught Andy Dorman, Danny Ward, Michael Owen and the late Gary Speed.

Staff at the 1,200-pupil school said their achievements made everyone there "very proud."

Wales take on England in Group B at the Stade Bollaert-Delelis in Lens at 14:00 BST.

Hawarden head teacher Paul Ellis said: "We've been very fortunate.

"Gary Speed started the revolution of the current Welsh team and on Saturday, Danny Ward was actually playing."

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Media captionThere is a friendly football rivalry at a Welsh border school, as Tomos Morgan reports

But the school is not taking all the credit.

"Football is massive in this region and you need to give credit to volunteers, teachers at primary schools and local youth clubs," said PE teacher Pete Ledsham.

"When they get to us, obviously they're not the finished article, but we play our part in helping them to progress.

"Some of them have been very fortunate and have gone on to great things, which makes us feel very proud."

Mr Ellis, who has taught at the school for 30 years, said they promoted a hard-working ethos and it was no coincidence former pupils have gone on to be international footballers.

Because of the school's proximity to the border, it has as many England fans as Wales fans which would "make for a great atmosphere" during the game, he added.

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