CHRIS Pennell hopes the revolving door of players coming and going at Sixways has ended as Worcester Warriors continue to add to their retention list.

The long-serving full-back became the 12th member of the current squad to commit his future to the club when he penned a new two-year contract earlier this week.

Over the past 11-and-a-half seasons in Warriors’ first team Pennell has seen the club undergo many changes which he admits has made life “very difficult” to progress.

But having kept hold of so many players, including academy stars Ted Hill and Ollie Lawrence, the 31-year-old feels Worcester are finally showing signs of forming a core which he reckons is key for the club’s future.

“You are always going to lose players along the line, that’s the nature of the beast,” Pennell said.

“But if we can keep the majority of these boys together for the next few years then it is a really exciting prospect for the club.

“Obviously in years gone by the player turnover has been a real issue.

“Even some of the years when it felt like we had not lost many we were still losing 12 to 16 players every year.

“That kind of turnover is really difficult to get any continuity.

“(The amount of player re-signings) is really pleasing but for me the most exciting thing is the youngsters that we are managing to keep hold of.”

Worcester-born Pennell, who has chalked up more than 200 appearances for his boyhood club and won an England cap in 2014, felt it was his responsibility to “impart as much knowledge as possible” onto Warriors’ rising stars.

“It is important that we are able to nurture that group of youngsters,” Pennell said.

“But if you look at the group just above them some of those boys have been here for quite a number of years now.

“The likes of Nick Schonert, Ryan Mills and Niall Annett have come here and experienced an awful lot but are still young enough to be at the top of their game.

“Four or five years from now it will be exciting to see how Worcester get on and the kind of squad that we will have built around those boys with this exciting crop of youngsters coming through too.”

Pennell is also celebrating his testimonial season as he raises money for Diabetes UK, the Grace Kelly Ladybird Trust and Acorns Children’s Hospice.

“Obviously my heart and soul lies with the club,” said Pennell who made his Warriors bow in 2007.

“Beyond that my family are very settled here as well.

“We love Worcester, the kids are happy and I am still incredibly passionate about the club and the direction that this playing group and coaching staff can take it.”