Five Islands Academy football team is celebrating a huge victory after winning the ESFA Small Schools football competition for the first time.

The tournament, played at Archbishop Benson School in Truro last week, included teams from nine Cornish schools.

Adam May, from Five Islands Academy, praised the young team, saying: “They were magnificent throughout the event, not conceding a single goal in any of the games, and playing with grit and determination.”

Return tickets to travel to the event were provided by the Isles of Scilly Steamship Company’s Community Fund, for both the team and supporting adults.

“I would like to thank the Steamship Company for their support in giving us tickets to travel to the competition,” said Mr May. “We have lots of talented youngsters living on the islands and it is great that they are able to have the chance to shine on the mainland.

“It’s a fantastic achievement for our small school and I’m delighted that our football is not only now on par with the mainland but we are at the top. We look forward to the regional finals in Bristol in March next year.”

The team was led by caption Thomas Stedeford, with David Hicks winning player of the tournament for his superb exploits in goal.

The Community Fund has so far awarded £72,000 to 47 different projects and good causes.

It was first launched in 2016 and is part of an estimated £1 million that the Steamship Group returns to the community every year through subsidised travel for islanders, NHS flights, sponsorships and charitable donations.

Full details, eligibility criteria and application forms are now available from the Steamship Group’s website. All projects are judged by members of an independent panel.