UCLan hosts major Primary School Indoor Athletics championship
Over 550 local school children put their sporting skills to the test at the annual Primary School Indoor Athletics Finals hosted by the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan).
Years five and six pupils from more than 30 Preston primary schools challenged each other in various track and field events at UCLan’s Sir Tom Finney Sports Centre before Broughton C of E Primary school was crowned the winner.
The competition is a key fixture in the Preston primary school sports calendar and staff and students from UCLan’s School of Sport and Wellbeing teamed up with volunteers from Preston Harriers and Ashton Community Science College Sports Leaders to deliver the athletics programme for the third consecutive year running.
UCLan staff and students work closely with a number of local schools to promote sport, health and fitness and this is a great way of highlighting that message in a fun way to the many hundreds of pupils who have attended the event.
Each of the schools took part in events such as hurdles, javelin, long jump and relay racing, with children from Preston Harriers providing demonstrations of some of the sports.
Among the schools taking part in the event were St Andrews Church of England Primary School in Ashton School.
Head Teacher Scott Martland said: “This is a great opportunity for us to be involved in an event that brings children together from right across the Preston area, mixing different cultural backgrounds in an way that will hopefully inspire many of the pupils to do more sport at school.”
St Andrews Primary School Pupil Harvey Forbes, 10 said ”Kids should have a passion for sport and maybe try activities that they haven’t done before. I love the competitive edge that comes with the games and the fact that it encourages you to try your hardest”
Laura Shepherd, Head of Sports at Goosnargh C of E Primary School said: “With our school being in a rural environment fitness and sports features prominently in our activities from an early age. This event is a perfect opportunity to remind pupils of the importance of that message.”
Goosnargh C of E School pupil Millie Cornall, 10, said: “It’s a great event as everyone can get do the sports they enjoy and try out some new ones which is great.”
Pupil Olivia Leech from Broughton C of E Primary School said: “I’ve never been to this event before and it really inspires you to do your best for your school. I love the fact you can do some of the more traditional events like javelin throwing as well as more unusual ones like the obstacle relay.”
UCLan lecturer in Sport and Wellbeing Chris Gunn, who worked closely with School Games Organiser, Harriet Ascroft, to coordinate the event said “This is the third year the University has hosted the event and the number of schools being represented is growing each year.
“UCLan staff and students work closely with a number of local schools to promote sport, health and fitness and this is a great way of highlighting that message in a fun way to the many hundreds of pupils who have attended the event. Inclusivity and enjoyment are key and we hope that many pupils will be inspired by the event to make sport and physical activity a really important part of their lives.”