OXFORD United’s official charity is expanding into three towns across the county.

Oxford United in the Community has confirmed it will develop bases in Abingdon, Bicester and Didcot this year, following a successful pilot scheme in Banbury, with Easington Sports FC.

The charity has a plan to create at least 10 countywide partnerships by 2023 and is now seeking grassroots football clubs to partner with in the three new towns.

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Chris Lowes, head of Oxford United in the Community, said: “This is an exciting new phase in the development of our hub and spoke strategy which is designed to ensure we expand our reach and engagement across Oxfordshire.

“Partnerships and collaborations with like-minded organisations is a key part of our model and we are now actively seeking partners in Bicester, Abingdon and Didcot.

“We are looking forward to building relationships in Bicester, Abingdon and Didcot, and delivering joint programmes that deliver positive impact in each community.”

Part of the charity’s work in each town will see community coaches deliver football-based programmes to help people build their confidence and other life skills, while upskilling teachers so they can continue to deliver high-quality physical education sessions.

Mr Lowes added: “We are looking to work with ambitious, community-focused, grassroots football clubs who share our passion in positively impacting the lives of local people through the power of football.

“It’s a common misunderstanding that our work seeks only to increase the number of people playing football – we are about much than that.”

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