Young footballers from across West Cumbria converged on Whitehaven Miners at the weekend to show off their burgeoning skills.

Sunday saw the West Cumbria Youth League host the first of this season’s Under-7 festivals at Miners and declared it a resounding success.

The format brings teams from the youngest age group together to play a series of short friendly games against sides of a similar ability.

Youth league spokesman Richard Lewthwaite said: “Teams travelled from all over Copeland and Allerdale and the standard of football on show from these little players was a credit to their clubs and coaches.

“The aim of these festivals for the younger age groups is to provide equally matched games so that all players benefit from taking part whatever their level of development.

“It also provides a good place for our newer coaches to gain experience and develop their skills at the same time.

“There are no results recorded and there is no trophy to win – the emphasis is wholly on player development and more importantly enjoyment.”

The youth league were delighted that representatives of the Cumberland FA were on hand to deliver a series of workshops to parents det-ailing the FA RESPECT campaign.

RESPECT is a countrywide initiative from the Football Association which aims to educate parents, players and coaches about the acceptable standards of behaviour at grassroots football matches.

The league’s Under-7s and Under-8s will be taking part in further festivals over the remaining months of the season.