Ridgewood make a splash
Youngsters from a Burnley secondary school scored a haul of silverware after swimming their way to success at this year's SPAR Lancashire School Games Disability Swimming Gala.
Over 200 children representing schools across the county joined together at Salt Ayre Leisure Centre in Lancaster last Wednesday to go head-to-head in a bid to achieve sporting glory.
Team Burnley was helped to success by Ridgewood Community High School, who scooped two gold, two silver and four bronze medals.
Chloe took first place in the KS3 girls’ 25m SLD back stroke event, while Basit took gold in the KS3 boys’ 25m breast stroke.
Elsewhere, Callum notched up two medals, with bronze in both KS4 boys’ 25m SLD back stroke and 50m front crawl.
Burnley star dubbed as one of the most hot-headed Premier League players over the last five years alongside Crystal Palace, Arsenal, Liverpool and Newcastle United aces
The hardest to beat goalkeepers in the Championship with Burnley's Arijanet Muric, Blackpool's Chris Maxwell, Preston North End's Freddie Woodman and Wigan Athletic's Ben Amos all rated
Brian was second in the KS3 boys’ 25m front crawl, and Lewis was second in the KS4 boys’ 25m front crawl.
Shavanne was third in the KS4 boys’ 25m breast stroke, with Bradley third in the KS3 boys’ 25m back stroke.
The gala was kicked off by an energetic dance performance courtesy of students from Our Lady’s Catholic College, before the Mayor of Lancaster Robert Redfern delivered an inspiring speech to begin the games.
He was joined by councillor Darren Clifford, Fiona Addison, marketing manager at James Hall & Co Ltd and Rachel Atkinson, management trainee at James Hall & Co Ltd to cheer the competitors on.
Young sports leaders from Lancaster and Morecambe College and Our Lady’s Catholic College were on hand to help coordinate the event and encourage the pupils, along with the Lancashire Lion, the official school games mascot.
Fiona Addison, marketing manager at James Hall & Company Ltd, said: “The Disability Swimming Gala is always a highlight of the SPAR Lancashire School Games calendar and a thoroughly enjoyable event which enables children of all abilities to participate in competitive swimming.
“It demonstrates the legacy of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic games and how the fantastic work done by Team GB continues to inspire all children to engage in sport.
“There were some fantastic performances and excellent sporting spirit on display both in and out of the pool, so well done to everyone involved.”
Helen Tyson, school games organiser for Burnley, said: “It was brilliant to see such enthusiasm on show at this year’s Disability Swimming Gala, with everyone putting in a lot of effort in the hope of securing a medal.
“Well done to all our competitors, and a special thank you must go to our young sports leaders and volunteers without whom we wouldn’t be able to deliver such a successful event.”
Organised by the Lancashire Sport Partnership, the SPAR Lancashire School Games is an inclusive scheme providing competitive sporting opportunities for all school children across the county.
It is sponsored by James Hall & Company Ltd, SPAR distributors for the North of England.
The Disability Swimming Gala is the first of two main events in the programme, with schools across Lancashire now competing for a place at the county finals which will be held at Blackpool’s Stanley Park on July 4th, where over 2,000 children are expected to battle it out for glory in a range of sports including gymnastics, football and athletics.
Now in its 11th year, the competition is implemented by the county’s school games organisers.
Over £128m of National Lottery and Government funding has been invested into the school games programme.