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²gether staff member Lydia Thompson will play for England Women’s rugby side when they take on Scotland in the Six Nations this Sunday.

Lydia, 21, is Social Inclusion Development Worker for the Trust’s South Locality – covering Stroud, Cirencester and the South Cotswolds.

But she has a busy few weeks ahead of her, because after her trip to Aberdeen on the weekend she flies straight out to Atlanta and then Brazil to play in the Women’s IRB Sevens tournament.

Lydia, who is a winger for Worcester Warriors, already has a number of international games, including previous six nations clashes, under her belt, but says she’s excited at the prospect of the game this weekend.

She said: “I’m really pleased to have been selected and very excited to take part in the Scotland match.

“We’ve got a mixed squad, with some more experienced players and some less experienced, so it will be great to see how we all play together.

“It’s my second time playing in a Six Nations tournament and they are always great occasions. I’m really looking forward to playing on the weekend as well as the Sevens tournament after that.”

In her day job Lydia helps to educate people about mental wellbeing, works with local employers, organisations and voluntary sector services to raise awareness of mental health and ensure access to opportunities for those who use ²gether services.  She also works alongside service users and carers to understand their needs and promotes the range of support and advice available to people with mental illness and their carers.
She started her rugby playing career with Stourbridge when she was 13, and made her national debut against Spain in the 2012 European Cup. In that match she scored a hat-trick, with two of her three tries coming within the space of four minutes.

Lydia has also been selected to join the England World Cup training camps taking place this year.

Social Inclusion Team manager Rebecca Shute said: “We are all wishing Lydia well for her forthcoming England matches and are looking forward to hearing about her experiences when she returns. We are all really proud of Lydia’s sporting achievements.”