WALES and Gloucester second row Will James is the new head of rugby at Ampleforth Abbey and College.

The 37-year-old, capped four times by his country, will join the North Yorkshire school on June 2 following his retirement from the professional game at the end of the season.

As well as taking charge of a school rugby programme that has produced legends such as former Wasps and England captain Lawrence Dallaglio, James’ appointment also sees him become head of sports development and performance for both Ampleforth College and its preparatory school, St Martin’s Ampleforth.

This new role will see him develop and sustain a support system that nurtures Ampleforth’s top sporting students, while ensuring opportunities are there for all Ampleforth’s sportsmen and women.

The 6ft 6in Welshman said: “I am hugely looking forward to joining the Ampleforth team. Ampleforth is a name synonymous with sporting achievement and success, and when the opportunity arose to be a part of the ongoing development programme I could not refuse.

“I am very excited to be working in such a focused environment, and look forward to taking the whole sporting culture to the next level.”

Ampleforth director of sport Richard Thorley said: “Will’s appointment is a key part of a strategic push to develop our rugby and general sporting programme at both Ampleforth College and at our prep school, St Martin’s Ampleforth.”