Fylde running

Preston, Blackpool and Fylde schools compete at SPAR Lancashire School Games Finale as event returns to Stanley Park after three-year hiatus

One thousand schoolchildren from across the Red Rose County have competed in the SPAR Lancashire School Games Finale for the first time in three years.

By Aimee Seddon
Wednesday, 13th July 2022, 4:55 am
Updated Wednesday, 13th July 2022, 12:03 pm

Taking place on July 5 at Blackpool’s Stanley Park, organsiers say there “was a real festival feel” as celebrations took place under sunshine and blue skies.

A wide range of sports took place on the day, including a football tournament, won by Whitworth Community High School in Rossendale, a netball tournament won by Euxton Primrose Hill Primary School, as well as track and field events.

There was also a variety of activities that children enjoyed participating in, and these varied from dodgeball to tag rugby, cricket to golf, and orienteering through to samba drumming.

Alongside the physical activities, competition winners were also announced for the Lancashire School Games baton design and opening decree competitions.

Winner of the baton design competition, 10-year-old William Taylor, from Brinscall St John Primary School, led the opening parade of all schools around the athletics track.

William said: “It was a bit daunting, but it was an amazing feeling to lead the parade to open the Lancashire School Games.

“For my baton design, I just thought about what was local to me in Chorley that I could feature, such as the canals and flower show, and also the Red Rose of Lancashire. I also included a rainbow in it, because in my view, imagination is all the bright colours.”

Then, Emily Short, age 11, of Balderstone St Leonard’s CE Primary School, took to the main stage to read out her winning decree on playing sport in the right spirit.

A party in the park was held to finish off the day where the winners of the dance finals – Hodgson Academy in Poulton-le-Fylde and Sherwood Primary School in Preston – performed their routines again.

The Lancashire School Games are run by Active Lancashire and The School Games Organiser Network, and they have been sponsored by SPAR for 15 years through their primary North of England wholesaler and distributor, James Hall & Co., based in Preston.

In 2022, the Games has engaged 10,000 children in sport and activities across Lancashire through 20 feature events and competitions, and it was the first to have a baton relay around Lancashire’s 14 districts, transported by walking, running, bike, on scooters, horseback, and by boat with the support of the RNLI.

Niels Dekkers, Retail Development Director at James Hall & Co. said: “The Lancashire School Games Finale was the best way to end a superb year of school activity that has been expertly put on by our valued partners at Active Lancashire and the School Games Organiser Network.

“All year we’ve been following the competitions and baton relay with intrigue and excitement, and the Finale highlighted perfectly why we are happy to put SPAR’s name to the Games as sponsor year after year.”

Adrian Leather, Chief Executive of Active Lancashire, said: “This year has been a welcome return to the School Games programme, and it has been incredible to engage 10,000 children and young people across the year in physical activity.

“This could not be achieved without the continued support of SPAR and James Hall & Co. Ltd, and we thank them for enabling children and young people to enjoy positive experiences through sports and activities.”

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