University welcomes more than 600 children for Preston school games
More than 600 children from 24 primary schools have come together at the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) to compete in the Preston Primary Sports Hall Athletics competition.
Staff and students from UCLan’s School of Sport and Wellbeing teamed up with School Games Organiser Harriet Ascroft, volunteers from Preston Harriers and Ashton Community Science College Sports Leaders to deliver the athletics event at the Sir Tom Finney Sports Centre.
Harriet said: “This is an annual level two athletics qualifying competition and the winning school, Broughton in Amounderness Church of England Primary School, will now go onto represent Preston in the county final which takes place next February in Blackpool.
“Through the event we aim to enthuse children about healthy competition and help them to understand the six key values set by Sport England, which are determination, honesty, respect, passion, teamwork and self-belief.”
The 24 schools each represented a different nation in the competition, taking part in events such as javelin throwing, hurdles and relay racing. Children from Preston Harriers provided demonstrations of some of the sports.
"Through the event we aim to enthuse children about healthy competition and help them to understand the six key values set by Sport England, which are determination, honesty, respect, passion, teamwork and self-belief."
Charlie Nelson, 10, from Sherwood Primary School commented: “I am a bit nervous about my races but also very excited. I love sport so it’s great to take part in an event like this.”
First year UCLan students studying sports and physical education helped to facilitate the Games.
Sophie Offord, a 20-year-old student, commented: “This event provides hands-on experience in running sports events for young people. We’ve been involved in a variety of different roles which is fantastic for our development and also allows us to network with the schools for potential future placements.”
UCLan sport and PE lecturer Chris Gunn said: “We are delighted to welcome schools from across the city of Preston. All of the UCLan students taking part in the event have been outstanding in working with the young people and making sure it runs smoothly. It is the first time we have hosted the Preston Primary Sports Hall Athletics competition and we look forward to working closely with the schools and local clubs in our civic anchor role.”
Kate James, a teacher from St Marys and St Andrews Catholic Primary School in Barton, added: “This is a very well organised event and the indoor sports are brilliant for this time of year. The kids really enjoy it and as we are such a small school, it brings the kids together. The organisers and UCLan have done a great job of running the event.”