0 Partick Thistle: Lottery duo launch youth academy

pr picEuromillions winners Colin and Chris Weir have given £750,000 to allow Premiership club Partick Thistle to create a new youth academy.

The Thistle Weir Youth Academy will be run by the Glasgow club's former striker and manager, Gerry Britton, who was already head of youth development.

The Weirs, from Largs in Ayrshire, won £161m two years ago.

Colin Weir explained that they wished to help as they were "longstanding fans of Partick Thistle".

"What impressed us was that it wouldn't just be for elite players but would also encourage local youngsters into football for the sheer enjoyment and fun of it," he said.

"This is a chance for the Thistle Weir Youth Academy to give hundreds of kids the opportunity to get involved in football"

"Having seen the club's determination to get this project off the ground, we decided that, as we were in a position to offer financial assistance, we wanted to help them achieve their dream."

The Weirs have previously donated large sums to a number of causes, including their own charitable trust to help health, sport, cultural, recreational and animal welfare projects and the Yes Scotland campaign for independence.

Thistle stress that the academy "will be run at arms' length from Partick Thistle Football Club" despite the trustees consisting of academy director Britton, club chairman David Beattie, director Greig Brown and general manager Ian Maxwell.

Thistle are in their first season back in Scotland's top flight and the announcement came ahead of Monday evening's visit by Hibernian.

Read the full story here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/24431067

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