Project: Roary’s Class Acts



Emmerson Marketing was appointed by Middlesbrough Football Club Foundation, The Professional Footballers’ Association and Middlesbrough Schools’ Teaching Alliance to help develop a brand that used the “power of football” to tackle issues regarding primary school attendance figures across Teesside, by spreading the message to local youngsters that every school day matters.



Recognising that our creative approach needed to be attractive to youngsters as well as meet the objectives of the other stakeholders, we developed ‘Roary’s Class Acts’ – a brand which was spearheaded by MFC’s much-loved Mascot, Roary the Lion. As well as developing the brand name and logo, the brief very much focused on changing the mindset of pupils to promote a positive and a healthy mental approach to attending school.

After creating the Roary’s Class Acts brand identity which put Middlesbrough Football Club Mascot ‘Roary the Lion’ at the heart of the scheme, we then developed a range of marketing materials to help motivate school attendance, including folders, stickers, certificates and wall charts. This encouraged and recognised excellence and improved attendance among primary school children through building a culture of healthy competition between schools, classes and children.


The programme was initially piloted in Middlesbrough Primary Schools and proved an overwhelming success, with every school reporting increased attendance figures. Subsequently, the scheme received funding from The Premier League and The Professional Football Association (PFA) to roll out the programme to primary schools across the whole of Teesside and East Cleveland.

Today, Roary’s Class Acts engages with over 15,000 youngsters through 16 schools across Middlesbrough, Redcar and Stockton, and is one of the leading school engagement programmes in Football. The success of the project has also seen it gain support from The Premier League who see the initiative as a perfect fit for its school’s engagement programme.



“Since the introduction of Roary’s Class acts, we’ve noticed an increase in parental engagement – our children are telling our parents that they can’t be absent from school or late that day. The children can also be heard encouraging their peers to attend school every day. We welcome all ideas of improving attendance and feel this initiative is having a really positive effect!”

Ellie Felgate, Pastoral Lead,

Sacred Heart RC Primary School


“The project has been a fantastic success in our schools. We have seen a marked improvement in attendance among those who are typically difficult to engage.”

John O’Boyle, Head of the Catholic Teaching Alliance


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