Primary school pupils from across Tees Valley, North Yorkshire, and Durham came together in Eston Leisure Centre in Middlesbrough for right to be called the North East of England Primary Panathlon Champion.
This inter-county Panathlon competition saw 52 competitors from nine schools compete after coming through county competitions.
The North Yorkshire School, Mowbray Primary of Bedale emerged as the overall winners after the 9 events, thus adding a Regional title to their trophy cabinet. The Forest School, of Harrogate, but also from North Yorkshire finished a close second.
Jonathan Moran, the teacher in charge from Mowbray School said, “All the children had a fantastic day. They really enjoyed the whole experience of competing against other schools, travelling out of the county, trying out some new sports activities and visiting a great new venue. They were all overjoyed to actually end up winning and were so proud to receive their medals and the fantastic trophy. I heard one boy say “I can’t believe we’ve actually won and we are the champions”. Another said “This is the best day ever.”
Jonathan reiterated the importance of the charity’s work, “A big thank you to Panathlon and everyone involved in organising these events. They are such a positive experience for all the children and staff, not just the winning team but everyone. They are so valuable in helping the children develop new skills, greater confidence and a sense of being an important part of their school team.”
Tom Brearley of second placed The Forest said, “Once again the event was very well organised and pitched just right for the spread of abilities in our group. It was clear from the smiles on their faces at the end of the day just how much they had enjoyed themselves and they couldn’t wait to get home and show off their medals and certificates. Many thanks from all of us here at The Forest School.”
Having North Yorkshire finishing 1st and 2nd was a sweet pill for Val French, Lead NY Special Schools Co-ordinator to have, “We introduced Panathlon into North Yorkshire only two years ago and the success and difference it has made to the lives of our young people with SLD/PMLD across our huge county has been phenomenal. Thanks to Panathlon we now have a clear competition pathway for these young people in meaningful and appropriate activities that not only meet their special needs but enable them to have fun and be the best they can be in a positive, safe and encouraging environment.”
In addition she said, “we now have well over 200 young Sports Leaders trained in Panathlon events from across our mainstream schools working with these young people and developing their own leadership skills and confidence. This has been a huge success story and I would like to thank Panathlon on behalf of North Yorkshire for what they have done for all these young people.”
Stephen Newham of Pennyman Academy in Tees Valley said “I just want to say thank you for organising this regional opportunity, our children loved competing against other counties, we are always looking for ways to enhance pupil’s opportunity to participate and this is great.”
The day was officiated by Northfields Schools leaders (pictured left) who again showed why they are among the best around the country that Panathlon use in these kinds of events.
Thanks to our sponsors St. James’s Place Foundation.