[T]he 2018 Cumbria School Games are upon us with Penrith Leisure Centre playing host to around 530 children and young people from across Cumbria.
Schools across the county will represent their districts and compete at the Spring Finals on the 28th and 29th March. Primary and Secondary school teams representing their districts have qualified through intra and inter school competitions organised by district School Games Organisers.
The Spring events, organised by Cumbria County Council’s Active Cumbria Team will start on Wednesday 28th March with 72 young participants from schools across the County taking part in the U16 MLD/SLD Tag Rugby Festival.
A further 144 pupils will descend on Penrith to compete in the Primary Schools Sports Hall Athletics Finals in the afternoon.
Thursday 29th March will see 252 primary children competing for their district in the Cumbria Key Steps Gymnastics finals organised by the Cumbria Schools Gymnastics Association.
To coincide with the Spring Finals, Active Cumbria is launching a curriculum competition for children across the county to design a healthy Cumberland Sausage. The competition is open to any child in education in Cumbria in Key stage 1 – 3 with a focus on healthy eating.
The competition is in association with Cumbrian Master Butchers Cranston’s who will recreate the winning sausage; the winner will be invited to a VIP experience at the Summer finals, being held in Carlisle in July.
Support for this year’s events has come from Cumberland Building Society. Phillip Ward of the Cumberland Building Society said:
“The Cumberland has a long history of supporting Cumbria School Games and we’re delighted to be the main sponsor again for this year’s event. The Games are always a fantastic occasion, providing an opportunity for Cumbrian school children to get together and take part in a friendly but competitive event. It’s always brilliant to see the array of talent coming from youngsters across the County and the level of enthusiasm for sport, especially exciting this year with the addition of the new triathlon event taking place in Keswick”
Organised by Active Cumbria one of 43 County Sport Partnerships across England and part of Cumbria County Councils Public Health & Communities Service, the games are delivered in partnership with School Games Organisers, schools, clubs, national governing bodies of sport and local partners.
In addition to the competitors, around 65 young people from across Cumbria have been trained in various roles to lead and officiate at the Cumbria School Games Spring Festivals.
Cllr Sue Sanderson, Cabinet Member for Schools and Learning at Cumbria County Council said: “The Cumbria School Games is the most anticipated event on the youth sporting calendar. It’s important for all children to be given the chance to enjoy a variety of sports and to compete in a fun and supportive environment. The Games also gives young people an opportunity to try different roles within sport, whether it is as a player or referee, the programme provides excellent opportunities for all young people to make a positive and active contribution to their school which is what the games are all about. I look forward to following each district’s progress as we build up to the county finals event in summer.”
Bethan Lishman Team GB Deaflympics 2017 Women’s Captain will be attending the Sportshall Athletics finals to inspire and encourage the children to follow their dreams, she said: “It’s such a great honour to be asked along to see the future amazing talent that Cumbria has celebrated in the Cumbria School Games. This is about celebrating the hidden talent of future stars and maybe just maybe being the first step to sporting greatness! It’s not about how you start it’s about your journey to greatness”
Special guests representing local councils and the event sponsors have been invited to the Sportshall Athletics event. Local sponsors supporting this year’s county events are the Cumberland Building Society, GLL, and BBC Radio Cumbria.