HARRY Lewis will take inspiration from his school days as he aims to make the top grade with City.

The new keeper is already wishing summer away so that he can get cracking in pre-season after sealing his switch north from Southampton.

The 24-year-old is eager to show the Valley Parade fans what he can do – as well as his mentor from home town Shrewsbury.

Lewis went to the same Meole Brace school as Celtic’s Joe Hart and the former England and Man City star has already been in touch about the move.

Lewis said: “There’s a fair few links between us. We share an agent and he was head boy at my school.

“He left in 2006 which is the year that I actually signed in the academy and I would watch him at Gay Meadow, Shrewsbury’s old ground.

“Growing up, that’s who I wanted to be.

“Everything he’s gone on to achieve in his career shows it doesn’t matter who you are or where you’re from.

“If you take opportunities that come your way, you can get to the top.

“This is what I see here - an opportunity to build something somewhere. I’m ambitious, I’ve got goals and I want to show how good I believe I can be.”

Apart from a season’s loan at Dundee United, Lewis has found games hard to come by at St Mary’s. He can appreciate that the City fanbase know little about him.

“One of the first things the gaffer said when I sat down with him was that it was time to get me playing,” he added.

“I know I don’t have a lot of games on my CV at the moment but what I do have is something to prove and I’m looking forward to showing people.

“I’ve not many played many games over the last three or four years but I’ve trained my backside off. I’ve learned a lot and I’m ready to put that into practice.

“The club have put their faith in me and I look forward to repaying that.

“Fans are entitled to their opinion. They buy a ticket to watch their club and I’ve got to win them over.

“But I’m looking forward to having a fresh start. I was at the stadium to sign and can only imagine the atmosphere that place gets when the team are doing well.

“I see myself as quite a motivated individual. I know the meaning of hard graft on and off the pitch.

“I’m a big believer in hard work, applying yourself and having a good attitude. That all goes a long way.”

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Former England international Joe Hart was head boy when Lewis was at schoolFormer England international Joe Hart was head boy when Lewis was at school

Off the pitch, Lewis has spent the last five years completing a psychology degree. He qualifies as City’s brightest recruit since Jon McLaughlin.

Like Jonny Mac, the honour that he really covets is a promotion. Like Mark Hughes, he does not want to hang about achieving it.

“You can see the potential,” said Lewis. “I had a meeting with the gaffer and Ryan (Sparks) and you can see the vision of the club, it’s optimistic and forward-thinking.

“That’s why it suited me well. I’m only 24 which is relatively young in goalkeeping terms and I’m ambitious.

“The gaffer asked me if I had any questions and I said, ‘how do you see this going?’

“He said, ‘I’m not here to mess around and I don’t want to be in League Two for much longer.’

“That’s exactly my standpoint. This club shouldn’t be in League Two and everything is there to kick on and to be a part of that is very exciting.”

Lewis, who joined on a two-year deal with a City option on a third, is also looking forward to exploring the Yorkshire countryside.

Having lived on the edge of the New Forest during his time with Saints, he is ready for a change of scenery.

“My best pal went to uni in York so I know there relatively well and my little brother’s in Manchester not so far away.

“I love Yorkshire. I’m big into nature and walking so you’ll catch me walking round the Dales.

“But I know it sounds really sad, and my girlfriend won’t like to hear this, but I can’t wait for summer to be over!

“I can’t wait for pre-season to start. I’m so excited.

“Everyone wants a promotion party at the end of the year – and so do I. I’m itching to get going.

“I obviously have personal goals that I’ll be setting but the be all and end all is that I don’t want to be in League Two next year with this football club.

“It’s a big club and there’s scope to improve it.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Harry Lewis cannot wait to begin pre-season with his new clubHarry Lewis cannot wait to begin pre-season with his new club

“It’s a new era and pre-season is going to be massive for us. We’re all going to have to gel and get to know each other fairly quickly.

“That’s all part of the process. That’s one of the attractive things for me, this club wants to make a lot of signings and wants to go places.

“It would be fantastic to put a stamp on that and be a big part in this club moving back up towards where it belongs.

“The gaffer has only ever managed in the Premier League and that’s his reputation. We’ve all got our sights set on showing everyone what we can do.

“I’m sure he wants a promotion on his CV, I want one. I want to be part of the team that did that and give the people of Bradford something to be proud of.”