It has been a busy year for Panathlon in the West Country, with more than 500 competitors taking part over 10 months of competition, alongside 150 Panathlon young leaders and teachers.
The year kicked off with two training dates in October – involving over 90 teachers and students – and will draw to a close with an inset training day at Milestone School in Gloucester on July 20th.
In between, there have been 10 months of fantastic Panathlon activity featuring further training days, two Panathlon competition days in Wiltshire and a full scale Primary Panathlon programme across Gloucestershire.
Part of the Gloucestershire School Games, the new Primary Panathlon programme featured three Level 2 competitions – Chipping Camden and Cirencester in February and Gloucester in April – involving a total of 285 disabled primary school students.
Selected teams then progressed to the county-wide (Level 3) Gloucestershire Primary Panathlon final on June 12th, before the culmination of the season with the inaugural West Counties Primary Panathlon in Swindon on June 30th.
The West Country’s first inter-county Panathlon, which was supported by Zurich Community Trust, was won by Gloucester’s Hempsted C of E Primary School.
Also in June, 80 children from five schools battled it out at Marlborough College in our multi-sport competition at the Wiltshire Panathlon – part of the Wiltshire School Games – with the team from Swindon crowned champions.
On top of the 650 particpants and leaders involved through the year, local funder the St. James’s Place Foundation – who announced an extension of their support for Panathlon at the Cirencester Primary Panathlon in February – have also involved staff in the project through volunteering days.
Now, after a successful year for Panathlon in the West Country, eyes are already turning to next year and exciting new challenges ahead, including the possibility of a Swim Panathlon to become part of the programme in the area.
So thank you our funders in the West Country – St. James’s Place Foundation and the Sainsbury’s School Games – and well done to everyone involved this year. Here’s to an exciting 2015/16!