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Gloucester raid Bristol for coach

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Gloucester have raided Bristol to secure their new head of academy

Gloucester have announced that Peter Walton has been appointed as the club’s new head of academy. The former Scotland back row forward is currently academy forwards and transitions coach at Bristol Bears.

After a playing career that saw him play top-flight club rugby with Newcastle and Northampton and win 24 caps for Scotland, Walton started his coaching career at Newcastle.

However, he has spent the majority of his time in a coaching capacity as part of the England age-group set-up, spending 10 years working with the England Under-18 squad. During that time, Walton and his coaching team oversaw three consecutive Grand Slams and had a sequence of 19 victories from mid-2008 until July 2010.

That experience working with age-group players made him the ideal candidate for the head of academy role at Gloucester. “For Gloucester to compete successfully at the highest level, we need our academy to produce a constant supply of talent who are capable of making the grade at first-team level,” explained director of rugby David Humphreys.

“As such, the head of academy role is a key one at the club and we’re delighted to have secured the services of someone with the experience that Peter possesses. 

“He spent 10 very successful years with England Under-18s and the number of players who transitioned through to the Under-20s and then senior level speaks for itself. We hope he will have the same impact on our academy and continue the production line of players.”

Walton confirmed that he’s very much looking forward to starting his new role. “I’m very happy to have the privilege of being named head of academy at Gloucester.

“I’ve been involved with the Premiership for many years, as a player and a coach, and feel that I have a good understanding of how much it means to the Gloucester fans to have local players wearing the Cherry and White shirt, but also how important it is for the club to develop its own talent.

“There are good foundations in place and the club has a real willingness to give youth a chance. It’s an exciting role and I can’t wait to get started and help to start bringing through the next generation of Gloucester talent. In the meantime, I’d like to thank the Bristol Bears for the opportunity they’ve given me over the past 12 months.”

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Gloucester have raided Bristol to secure their new head of academy