THERE was a strong Olympic flavour to a schools athletics event staged in Ellesmere Port.
This year’s Ellesmere Port, Neston and Helsby School Games, organised by the Cheshire Links School Sport Partnership, were contested by 32 local primary schools and 800 pupils.
A similar number of parents and teachers watched the action unfold at Stanney Oaks track last Thursday.
With this year’s event taking place just a few weeks before the start of the London 2012 Games, schools spent many months designing Olympic flags and posters while also taking part in a series of competitions to secure places in their school’s team.
The five secondary school members of the School Sport Partnership – UCE Academy, Whitby High, Neston High, Ellesmere Port Catholic High and Helsby High – worked together to organise the event along with Chris Caskie, Cheshire School Games manager.
More than 100 young sports leaders helped out on the day, including London 2012 Platinum Young Ambassadors Ben Ready (Neston High), Cory Atkins (UCE Academy) and Whitby High pupil Catlin Kennedy, an Olympic torch bearer and the 2012 Cheshire Young Volunteer of the Year.
Each school represented a different country and dressed in the colours of their particular nation.
First place overall went to Kingsley Community Primary School (representing Argentina), while second place went to Helsby Hillside Primary School (New Zealand) and Neston Primary (Ireland) finished third.
The fair play trophy was awarded to the Oaks Primary and the best national costume award was presented to William Stockton Primary.
Event organisers would like to thank Our Place, Ellesmere Port, for providing the medals, Sainsbury’s supermarket in Ellesmere Port, the official sponsor of the School Games, for refreshments and prizes, and Dennis Wall and his team at West Cheshire AC for their support.
Feedback from schools, parents and pupils has been so positive that the event could become an annual ‘Olympic legacy’ celebration of school sport.
The School Sport Partnership organises more than 80 events each year. If any businesses in Ellesmere Port, Neston, Helsby or Frodsham would like to support one of the next competitions, contact Chris Caskie by phone on 0151-338- 2408 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.