School footie hero’s return

Teenage football star Mason Bennett is set to return to his old school to help unveil a new all-weather pitch where the football stars of tomorrow will learn their skills.

The Derby County striker left Shirebrook Academy, in Common Lane, Shirebrook, last summer to play for the Sky Bet Championship side full-time after completing his GCSEs.

Now the 17-year-old, who is also an England Under-19 international, will go back to school as guest of honour to cut a ribbon to open the Academy’s 3-G football pitch on 5th November, aided by Mansfield Town legend Ken Wagstaff.

The pitch, which is floodlit and has realistic artificial grass, was built after the Academy worked in partnership with the Derbyshire County FA to secure a £397,100 grant from sports charity the Football Foundation.

The pitch and a newly-built sports pavilion will enable pupils to play football all year round. Shirebrook Rangers FC will use the facilities as well.