Cambridge Rugby Academy


A full-time education and rugby development programme for 16-18 year olds. 

FREE for 16-18 year olds - There will be a subsidised cost for purchasing training kit.

4-5 GCSE's Level 9-4 including English or Maths, or both.
You will need to be 16 years old by 31st August, ready to start the programme in early September.

Cambridge Rugby Academy

SCL Education Group

September 2019
For 2019 course information, please request a prospectus below.

The programme will be held at Cambridge Rugby Club, Volac Park, Granchester Road, Cambridge, CB3 9ED

Access to University, Apprenticeships, play professional and semi-professional rugby,  Rugby coaching, Sport, Leisure and Fitness jobs.


View Trial Dates



    • Select your chosen Academy and Book trial
    • Provide the information requested

    • Demonstrate your skills
    • Successful players will be offered an interview

    • One hour Education interview
    • Your chance to ask any questions about the education programme and show your passion for sport

    • For you and your parents
    • Hear about the Education and Rugby programme
    • Meet the SCL teachers and Academy coaches
    • Understand your exit routes when you graduate from the academy
    • Ask any questions

If successful you will be given a conditional offer and then accepted depending on your results in August.


Players will study a variety of nationally-recognised qualifications within sport, coaching and fitness managed by SCL. 

Where required students will study Maths and English GCSE or Functional Skills.

SCL Education Group is one of the UK’s leading independent providers of education through sport

  • Government approved post-16 private education provider
  • Experts in the field of sport and education delivery with over 15 years' experience
  • Nationally recognised for high quality advice and guidance 
  • Programmes delivered in real sports environments 
  • Proven Progression routes


In addition to classroom based learning delivered by our outstanding teachers and training by highly qualified coaches, students will have access Pro-VLE, our Digital Learning Environment. Pro-VLE has been specifically designed to create a personalised, first class, digital learning experience for our students and has been tailored to support their education and development.

  • Access study resources any place and at any time
  • Simple submission of assignments online
  • Students can interact with their class, teachers and coaches using Yammer
  • Direct access to timetables, learner plans and emails 
  • Immediate access to tutor support
  • Coaches will share Football performance and grades directly with students online
  • A section of the Pro-VLE solely dedicated to information, advice and guidance on Career Progression
  • Policies, Procedures, bursary forms and safeguarding information available at the click of a button
  • FREE Microsoft Office 365


  • Compete in the National League Division 1
  • Professional coaching led by Level 2, 3 & 4 Coaches 
  • Guidance on individual fitness
  • Nutritional advice
  • Field sessions, S&C, analysis, nutrition and more
  • Regular appraisal to monitor development both on and off the pitch
  • Focus on the four core components of the player development model: technical, tactical, physical and mental skills development 

There will be a subsidised cost for purchasing training kit at the start of the season. Further details about this will be provided upon the player's acceptance into The Rugby Academy. 



View Trial Dates



Simon Leader – Academy Director and Academy Coach – RFU L3 Coach

Simon has been coaching rugby for over 15 years. In this time, he has worked with a range of ages and abilities and with both men and women, boys and girls. Simon is the first team attack and backs coach at Cambridge Rugby who currently play in National League 1. For the last four years, Simon has also been the skills, kicking and backs coach for the Belgian National Team, helping guide them to 25th in the World Rugby Rankings. Simon is also the Rugby Development Officer at the club and oversees all elements of the player and coach development pathways at the club. Prior to working at Cambridge Rugby Simon coached and worked as a development manager at Northampton Saints and has also coached and been a teacher at a 6th from college, The College of West Anglia, in Norfolk.

As a player, Simon has played to Level 3 standard in both Wales and France, as a semi- professional. A fly half or centre, he was also capped by the Wales Counties side, playing internationals against Germany, the British Army and Denmark.

A passionate and motivated coach, Simon is now fully focused in providing development opportunities for all of the players he works with; working towards creating an elite pathway, as he strives to become the very best coach he can be.

Simon's coaching philosophy: "In every session I will strive to create a challenging and competitive environment where players can learn from mistakes, success and relevant feedback."

Ben Penfold – Academy Coach – RFU L2 Coach, working towards L3

Ben started his coaching career at Cambridge Rugby Club as a Community Rugby coach delivering in and around the Cambridgeshire area. Over the past five years coaching, he has worked for Worcester Warriors Community and DPP then coming back to Cambridge area and now running Cambridge Rugby Club Community department. As a coach he has worked with Midlands U20’s, is currently Head Coach of Eastern Counties U20’s, backs coach for Eastern Counties Seniors and Saints U16 DPP Head coach. On the playing side he came through the Hartpury College academy and joined Cambridge Rugby Club where he has been playing for the past 5 years. He has also represented England Counties U20’s for two years.

He is a up and coming coach which enjoys creating a learning environment for the players, helping them become a better player. He also enjoys specialist coaching for scrum half’s and fly half’s and kickers.


The programme will be held at Cambridge Rugby Club, Volac Park, Granchester Road, Cambridge, CB3 9ED


View Trial Dates

  • SCL are pleased to announce that they are Finalists for the Apprenticeship Provider of the Year!

  • SCL are an Ofsted registered Childcare provider.

  • SCL have partnered with De Montfort University to launch a Sports Coaching Degree programme,

  • The Flame Awards are the largest celebration of innovation and excellence from across the sector.

  • SCL are strategic partners with UKactive.

  • EU EFS

  • Matrix

  • Traineeships are a stepping stone to future success for young people, businesses and the wider economy.

  • Our Saturday Soccer Coaches are FA qualified, Level 2 and above

  • SCL's School Sport Apprenticeship programme has been designed specifically to give those wanting a career in coaching and physical education the skills, knowledge and qualifications to help make it happen.

  • SCL is an employer partner of the Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity.

  • SCL were awarded an Ofsted outstanding in 2015 for their Holiday Activities.

  • HITZ is Premiership Rugby’s award-winning education and employability programme.