Cockburn School names new sports facility after Kyle Asquith

Cockburn School officially named its new outdoor sports facility in memory of Kyle Asquith yesterday (24 April 2024).

Kyle was a former student of Cockburn School who passed away in 2013. His organs saved the lives of 5 people and since then, The Kyle Asquith Foundation has gone on to raise thousands of pounds for the NHS Blood and Transplant Trust and to support children from Cockburn School to achieve their aspirations. The school continues to raise funds and the awareness of organ donation.

L-R: Sam Lisone (Leeds Rhinos), Rod Dixon (Head of Cockburn School), Kyle Asquith’s parent and grandparents, David Gurney (Executive Head Cockburn MAT), Mickael Goudemond (Leeds Rhinos)

Kyle’s parents, trustees of the charity, presented representatives from the Leeds NHS Blood and Transplant Trust with a cheque for £1,000 on behalf of the charity before they cut the ribbon to officially open the facility.

Tracy and Alex Asquith hand over a cheque for £1,000 to Leeds NHS Blood and Transplant Trust

Leeds Rhinos and Leeds United also played their part, both of whom work with Cockburn School to support the development of rugby and football within the school. The event was attended by Rhinos first team players Sam Lisone and Mickael Goudemond who made time to speak to the students involved and have some group photographs. Leeds United sent a video message from first team player Sam Byrom, who wished everyone luck for the event.

Players from the Year 8 and Year 9 rugby teams with Leeds Rhinos’ Mickael Goudemond and Sam Lisone

Students from the school’s netball and rugby teams were training on the new pitch and court as theguests for the event toured the facility.

The new pitch (suitable for football and rugby) and triple tennis court/netball court will play a vital role in the outdoor sport provision for Cockburn School. They are located to the south of the school site, on a section of the former private South Leeds Golf Club course which closed in November 2019.

The school had a shortage of outdoor sporting facilities at the school (65% below the required provision) associated with the growth in student numbers over recent years. However, the scheme faced opposition from some local residents on environmental grounds. It finally received planning permission in October 2022.

Representatives from Leeds City Council and Moortown Group, who worked together to plan, design, and build the facility also attended the naming ceremony.

Kyle’s mum, Tracey Asquith, said:

“We are so grateful to the school for how much they all do in Kyle’s memory. The new facility provides a lovely legacy for our son who loved his sport.”

Kyle’s dad, Alex Asquith added

“Kyle would have loved this! He would have wanted to be out here all the time.”

Executive Headteacher and trustee of the Kyle Asquith Foundation, David Gurney, said:

“Naming this excellent new sports facility after Kyle will ensure that he continues to be remembered. This excellent new sports facility will help to ensure that all of our students continue to learn about being healthy and fit while developing their practical sports skills.”

Head of School, Rob Dixon, said:

“The students playing on the pitch today know about Kyle despite the years moving on. We want to make sure the Foundation is still going strong so that everyone can take ownership of it. We are very proud of the work that our students do to raise funds and keep his memory alive.”

If you wish to contribute to The Kyle Asquith Foundation, please contact the school at and title the email ‘Kyle Asquith’. They also have a JustGiving page and you can make donations online at


This post is based on a press release issued by Cockburn School


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13 Replies to “Cockburn School names new sports facility after Kyle Asquith”

  1. This brilliant. WHat an amazing new facility for the south Leeds community. The kids at Cockburn must be so pleased. Such a good thing too to name it after Kyle Asquith.

  2. Why do you insist on repeatedly stating the land was part of the Golf course. Since the Golf course shut the land became part of Middleton Park and was an accessible haven for the mostly elderly residents of the Southleigh Estate during lockdown. The land is now a cesspit of rotting tyres leaching their toxins into the environment.

    1. Because the land WAS originally part of the golf course. The elderly residents have a few hundred extra acres they can use since the club closed. And the residents of south Leeds have a brilliant new facility. Mr. Spencer should perhaps realise that youth sometimes has to head the queue, not just the elderly.. The moaners – it’s always the same ones – raising the same tedious issues – need to realise that the pitch was built according to the recommendations of Sport England, not to the specifications of their particular obsessions. Perhaps as Mr. Spencer appears not to like developments in the area he should consider moving to somewhere that is more amenable to him – the moon comes to mind. Up on that planet there are no irritants such as young people to put him off his Horlicks.

      1. If you are calling rubber crumb a tedious issue then you should know a freedom of information request at the end of last year revealed that Sport England consider all the existing stock of 3G pitches in the UK as ‘strategic high risk’ because of the EU ban & impending UK ban. Sport England have moved away from rubber crumb already and are working with England Hockey to roll out non infill pitches next year in time for the DEFRA statement. Meanwhile the FF are backing the transition with their alternative infill pitches. The school and council were warned about the reg changes but pressed ahead anyway. Rubber crumb pitches are literally dead in the water. It is tedious however to keep explaining this to you.

      2. Sport England’s criteria are way out of date This type of pitch is now banned by the EU and if you look up the work of Andrew Watterson a Professor of Public Health you will see why. These pitches are toxic to the environment but also to humans. Alternatives are available and should be used instead of allowing children to inhale and ingest toxic tyre crumb.

  3. It is important to clarify that the plastic pitches were opposed on both environmental and human health grounds. The shredded tyre pitches are now banned in the EU and the decision to ban the pitches is based on both reasons. UK REACH also recognises that the latest scientific studies suggest a risk to human health. Shredded tyres contain hundreds of hazardous chemicals including carcinogens, endocrine disruptors and chemicals that cause reproductive and developmental issues. A decision from Defra is due next Spring with the ban likely to match the EU transition deadline of 2031. The Netherlands is phasing the pitches out earlier such is the concern there. In 2022 Leeds City Council were asked by one of the worlds leading experts in the area, Professor Andrew Watterson, to use a precautionary approach and switch to an alternative infill or natural grass. The council have ignored this advice. With children being especially vulnerable to chemical pollution, it would be sensible for parents to think carefully before allowing their children to play on shredded tyre waste. As for Middleton Park and the wildlife, the facility is likely to leave a lasting legacy of plastic and chemical pollution. As evidenced by multiple studies worldwide.

  4. Graham,
    I’m sure the elderly residents of the Southleigh Estate can still use the other 95% of the former private golf course.

    1. Maybe you should try it with a few incapacitating health conditions. The other section is not as wild or next to the woodland and has its own problems with antisocial behavior.

  5. Suzy,
    This one is not dead in the water. I watch pupils have a fantastic time on it. Why would Sports England allow it. Your issue is not the 3G pitch but the outstanding school increasing facilities for children. What a strange world we live in.

    1. Sport England and the Football Foundation allow it because without rubber crumb it might be much more expensive for them to achieve the FF’s aim of >1000 new 3G pitches by 2030. That’s a new one every other day. I would not rely on either as a reliable source of on the environmental risk. The FF cites regulation of rubber crumb as one of the biggest risks to its programme. The European Chemical Agency – hardly eco-warriors – assessed the environmental risk and the EU banned rubber crumb as a result. Despite massive lobbying from the synthetic surface and tyre industries. DEFRA is currently reviewing what the UK should do. But why a council that claims to care about the environment would approve the use of public money to use a material that is known to damage the environment – when FA-approved alternatives are available – is beyond me. To suggest such concerns raised by residents are not genuine is unfathomable.

  6. The pitch is now open and meets all legal requirements. It’s for the kids, so get a life. The school does a fantastic job. What’s wrong with you people, it was a private golf course. Don’t you care about the future generations

  7. It may meet current UK requirements, but the UK Government is way behind in regulating the use of rubber crumb as the base for these pitches. They are been banned in many countries globally. As a mother and grandmother I do care passionately about future generations and Ihave taken the time toresearchthe issues thoroughly, rather than accepting the propagandapromoted by sports bodies which have a vested interestin thestatus quo becauseit is thecheapestoption – rubber crumb is highly toxic and there is increasingly strong peer reviewed evidence that children are particularly vulnerable to it’s effects . In the US it has been linked to cancer clusters. I want our young people to lead healthy, happy lives – inhaling and ingesting ground up tyres is not part of that.

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