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Gloucester recruit ‘absolute best fit’ attack coach from London Irish

By Liam Heagney
(Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

Just 12 hours after it was revealed that defence coach Brad Davis is off to coach the Wallabies attack at the upcoming Rugby World Cup, London Irish confirmed that academy backs coach James Lightfoot Brown will take up the attack coach position at Gloucester for the 2023/24 season.


The 29-year-old Lightfoot Brown joined the coaching staff at London Irish in 2015 after representing England 7s in his playing career. Director of rugby Declan Kidney said: “We wish James all the best for the future and look forward to seeing him continue his development as a coach.

“James has played a big part in the development of our younger players, many of these players are regularly in our matchday squads. He has been an important part of our coaching setup over the past few years, and he will be missed around Hazelwood.”

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Angus Gardner on Head Contact processes
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Angus Gardner on Head Contact processes

Lightfoot Brown added: “I have had an incredible time in my eight years at London Irish and I can’t thank everyone at the club enough. The decision to leave was not one that was taken lightly but one I felt I had to make at this stage in my career. I’ll be leaving behind amazing memories and some great friends who will remain so beyond my time at the club.

“I’d like to thank Declan Kidney, the first team coaches, the staff and in particular Les Kiss for the role he has played in my time at the club.


“I’d also like to thank Patrick O’Grady and the academy staff, who do such a fantastic job at nurturing the club’s upcoming talent. The future of London Irish is incredibly bright with the talent they have on and off the pitch and I wish Irish all the best for the future.”

A corresponding statement from Gloucester read: “Highly regarded as one of the best up-and-coming coaches in the country, Lightfoot Brown has played a key part in developing a conveyor belt of talent into the Premiership. His role in instilling attacking principles, from the academy through to the first team, has seen the Exiles display an increasingly expansive brand of rugby this season.


“Lightfoot Brown’s appointment is an extension to the current coaching team, with Tim Taylor taking up the role of skills and backs transition coach.”

Head coach George Skivington said: “We have made no secret about looking to expand our coaching team ahead of the new season and James’ signature is one that we are really pleased to get over the line. We had a pretty clear vision of the type of person and coach we were looking for and James proved to be the absolute best fit for us.

“He’s a young English coach, but with plenty of experience under his belt already. He’s well regarded as one of the most exciting coaches in the game, so we’re really looking forward to him putting his stamp onto our attack next season.”

Lightfoot Brown added: “I’m incredibly excited to be joining Gloucester Rugby. There’s a clear draw to the club, the history, the fanbase and the ambition for the future, it’s a great place to be.


“The quality of players that we have at the club is incredible and after speaking with George and the coaching staff at Gloucester, there is a real ambition to develop our game further next season and that’s something I can’t wait to get stuck into.”


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