Youngsters on the ball at sports fest

Children from Grosvenor Park Primary School enjoying the Lancaster and Morecambe Schools Boccia Festival organised by students from the University of Cumbria.

Children from Grosvenor Park Primary School enjoying the Lancaster and Morecambe Schools Boccia Festival organised by students from the University of Cumbria.

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YOUNGSTERS from schools across the district joined in the fun at a boccia festival set up by university students.

The event was organised and run by five students from the University of Cumbria, who are all in their final year of studying coaching and sports development.

For one of the modules in the final year the students –Josh Lancaster, Kate Ollerenshaw, Louise Kirkland, Delta Williams and Peter Armstrong – were expected to organise and run a sporting event, and came up with the Lancaster and Morecambe Schools Boccia Festival 2012.

Schools taking part included the Loyne Specialist School, Grosvenor Park, Morecambe Road, St Bernadette’s, Dallas Road, Willow Lane and Moorside.

The event, which took place at the University of Cumbria Sports Hall, aimed to give disabled youngsters the chance to compete and take part in a Paralympic recognised sport, especially significant given the Paralympics event at London 2012.

Boccia, a game similar to bowls, was designed to be played by people with a disability. Peter Armstrong, one of the students behind the project, said: “Disabled children often get less opportunity to participate in competitive sport, and/or represent their school for any sporting events.

“We could provide these youngsters with an opportunity to take part in a fantastic festival, but also signpost them to future participation opportunities locally, and facilitate links between schools leading to further sport development in this particular sport.”