Shropshire Star

Meet the former Shrewsbury Town footballer named as head of town's newest school

A former Shrewsbury Town footballer who became a teacher has announced his transfer to a new club . . . sorry, school.

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Sam Aiston

Sam Aiston, currently headteacher of Broseley C of E Primary School, will become the head at the new Bowbrook Primary School in Shrewsbury.

Midfielder Aiston scored seven goals in his 167 appearances for Salop between 2000–2005 before his career on the pitch ended in 2011.

His gaffers at The 3-18 Education Trust proudly announced the news on Friday.

As headteacher of Broseley C of E Primary School he received praise for creating a school that loves reading and is passionate about growing global citizens.

Bowbrook Primary School will open in September 2023. Building work for the new school has already commenced on site at Pip Squinter Way, Shrewsbury.

SAME DAY Sam Aiston, who has started his teaching roll at Bicton Primary School, pictured with pupils Chloe Jones, 11, and DanAdams, 11.PIC PETER SHAH

During a rigorous selection process involving trustees, trust staff, governors and pupils, Sam Aiston stood out as an exceptional candidate. He promises to make the school a beacon for inspirational learning, a place where the children love learning and have fun.

On accepting the role, he said: “I feel honoured and excited to be creating a school for the future, a flagship school for Shrewsbury, which is successful and popular with everybody.”

“Normally when you take on a headship you are handed over a ready-made school with a team of staff and it takes time to implement your vision and make changes but Bowbrook Primary is a fantastic opportunity to be creative with new ideas and start something fresh and exciting from the get-go.”

He added: “I am looking forward to joining the 3-18 Education Trust, I share their vision of wanting all pupils to be in great schools and creating a culture where staff enjoy their work and wellbeing is a priority.”

Sam Aiston in action for Shrewsbury Town

During the recruitment process, Coleham School pupils asked Sam: “What would you do with £10,000 if you could spend it on anything for the school?’

Sam responded with a "school gym where staff and pupils could take time out to exercise to improve their physical and mental health”, which was very popular with the children.

As headteacher, he promotes a love of exercise and fitness to his pupils and is well known as a former professional footballer, having made over 165 league appearances for Shrewsbury, helping the club to promotion from the Football Conference in 2003-04.

Mr Aiston and ex-teammates launched a podcast, In The Stiffs, in 2021 to speak with current and past footballers about their careers.

The 3-18 Education Trust will manage the new primary school within its trust of six schools. The local academy trust already includes two Shrewsbury schools; The Priory School and Coleham Primary School.

Mr Aiston will take up the headteacher position in April 2023 in order to get the school ready for opening in September 2023. He will be meeting prospective parents, recruiting a team of staff and governors and writing the new school’s curriculum.

Former Shrewsbury Town players David Edwards, Sam Aiston and Gavin Cowan watch the game.

Claire Jones, Deputy CEO of the trust said: “We are delighted to have Sam join us to head up Bowbrook Primary, he is an excellent headteacher and school leader, full of ambition and drive to give the children an exceptional education. I have every confidence that he will bring the new school community with him on the journey and create a legacy for the future pupils of Bowbrook.”

Parents are currently applying for reception school places for September 2023 via the school’s website