"I don't think there will be many junior football teams which have produced quite so many illustrious sportsmen and sportswomen," predicts Irwin Wallace. And that certainly seems a fair statement to make.

Wallace’s “Nappy squad” at Penrith’s Castletown Football Club has now helped to develop more than 1,000 footballers.

Among those to come through the ranks under Wallace’s stewardship at Castletown are Danny Grainger and Adam Collin, one now a former Carlisle United captain, with the other having taken over the armband at Brunton Park this summer.

Winger Liam McCarron, 18, who left Carlisle to join Leeds in July after breaking into the Blues’ first-team last campaign, is the latest to have made a mark in the professional game, having began at Castletown.

"It’s difficult to get into professional football at the best of times," admits Wallace, named Volunteer of the Year at last year’s Cumbria Sports Awards.

"So, to see all three of Liam, Adam and Danny do it, it has been great."

But it’s not just on the football field where those from the “Nappy squad”, which is open to boys and girls as young as four, have thrived.

Jonny Sim is England’s Futsal team’s keeper, brother and sister Megan and Mike Ellery have both represented England’s rugby sevens side, while Asher Hart is Penrith Cricket Club’s professional, and Jed Thompson has made his mark in the karate world.

Discussing the success his former players have gone on to enjoy, Wallace says: “It’s definitely not just in football.

“Michael’s dad, whose just retired as a headteacher, noted it was the discipline [from being involved with the Nappy squad] that really carried him through. And Danny always said he never, ever was the best player on the pitch, but he worked the hardest. It’s good to see.”

Now, some of the finest athletes Castletown has helped to produce are, themselves, turning their hand to coaching.

Having retired from professional football, Grainger has taken charge of Workington Reds, as well as running his Cumbria Football Academy. Meanwhile, in the States, Josh Moffet recently joined the coaching staff at American football side, the Eagles.

"We try to install discipline, work ethic and respect. We have had kids that don’t buckle down and don’t come back but, of those who seem to stay, they seem to go on," admits Wallace.