Regional handball competition hosted for second time at UCLan
UCLan sport and PE students officiate alongside Lancashire School Games
The University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) hosted schools from around the region as they competed in the County Finals Handball Competition.
More than twenty teams took part in the event, which was organised by Lancashire School Games Organiser Tim Fletcher. Blessed Trinity proved victorious in the girls’ competition whilst Lancaster Royal Grammar School came out as winners for the boys. Both will now play in the North West round, where they could potentially find themselves at the National Finals in June.
The event was overseen and officiated by students on the sports and PE course at UCLan. It is one of a number of school sports event hosted by the University throughout the year to provide UCLan sports students with practical, hands-on experience of working with young people. Abigail Gent, who is in her first year at the university, believes the preparation beforehand was key for them to run the event.
She said: “A few of us from UCLan took a level one handball refereeing course so we could come down and help today, and then a couple of weeks ago we helped out at Preston’s College in a similar event to this. It was an all-girls handball competition. It was kind of a starter for us to get ready for these important games.”
"This is a great event and combines opportunities for our students to gain relevant experience while having a positive impact on local sports event."
Andy Clark, Regional Delivery Partners Manager for England Handball, expressed his approval of the partnership with UCLan and the efforts put in by the students.
“We’re really lucky to have the UCLan students, we’re doing a training programme with them, helping them with officiating,” he said.
“We have eight students in the morning and eight in the afternoon for the boys’ games. This is part of the training development that they offer at the University. So, in terms of having a multi layered event, this is fantastic for National Governing Bodies to work with schools in the local area.”
Chris Gunn, lecturer in Sport and Sport Business Management, added: “this is a great event and combines opportunities for our students to gain relevant experience while having a positive impact on local sports event. We welcome these partnerships with Active Lancashire, the Schools Games Organisers and local schools.”
This was the second consecutive year the event has been hosted at the Sir Tom Finney Sports Centre.