2024
Panathlon launch new Grand Prix Finals series
Panathlon launch new Grand Prix Finals series
We launch a new Grand Prix Finals series – with competitive events taking place simultaneously across multiple venues, event managers comparing scores online and regional champions crowned.
2023
2023 Autumn term officially our biggest ever
2023 Autumn term officially our biggest ever

The 2023/24 autumn term was officially our biggest ever – with over 20,119 pupils with disabilities and special needs competing in 363 events, plus 2,208 Young Leaders (an 11% year-on-year rise).

First ever Panathlon event in Northern Ireland
First ever Panathlon event in Northern Ireland

Panathlon holds its first ever overseas team competition as 69 pupils gather for a 10-pin bowling event in Belfast.

Paralympic gold medallist named new Chair
Paralympic gold medallist named new Chair

Paralympic champion Liz Johnson is appointed Chair of the Panathlon Foundation charity, succeeding Andy Sutch who held the post for a decade.

Research shows our impact on schools and communities
Research shows our impact on schools and communities

Independent research shows Panathlon’s positive impact reaches deep into schools and communities and drives transformational change for children with disabilities and special needs across England and Wales.

We announce record figures for 2022/23
We announce record figures for 2022/23

Our annual figures show a stunning 20% increase in participation with a record 62,981 pupils with disabilities and special needs taking part in our sporting programmes in 2022/23.

Arsenal amputee footballer returns as Panathlon Leader
Arsenal amputee footballer returns as Panathlon Leader

Arsenal amputee player and former Panathlete, Isaac Addai, returns to volunteer as a leader at one of our competitions in North London – and says he “would not be the player I am today” without the opportunity to compete in sport at school given to him by Panathlon.

First ever competition staged in South Wales
First ever competition staged in South Wales

Eighty-six pupils from 12 schools had an absolute ball as Panathlon held its first ever competition south of The Valleys.

2022
Panathlon wins SJA ‘Sport for Social Change’ award
Panathlon wins SJA ‘Sport for Social Change’ award

Panathlon won the ‘Sport for Social Change’ award at the Sports Journalists’ Association’s British Sports Awards at The Brewery in London.

November 2022 officially our biggest ever month
November 2022 officially our biggest ever month

November 2022 was officially Panathlon’s biggest ever month of sporting activity as we staged 142 events in 22 school days across England and Wales.

Panathlon sets new participation records
Panathlon sets new participation records

Panathlon releases its annual participation figures for 2021/22 which show a record 52,476 young people participated in our sporting competitions from 2,078 schools in 758 events across 42 English counties and seven unitary areas of Wales.

GB star ‘owes it all to Panathlon’
GB star ‘owes it all to Panathlon’

Great Britain star Michael McCabe tells us he “may never have become a wheelchair racer” if Panathlon hadn’t given him the opportunity to fall in love with sport” at school.

Panathlon partners with Greenwood Academies Trust
Panathlon partners with Greenwood Academies Trust

Panathlon forged a partnership with Greenwood Academies Trust that will open up sporting opportunities to thousands of SEND pupils across its 37 primary, secondary and special academies.

Adults with SEND join the Panathlon family
Adults with SEND join the Panathlon family

Panathlon joins with multiple partners to serve up tennis sessions for adults with disabilities and special needs at Pocklington Tennis Club in East Yorkshire.

Panathlon’s biggest month ever
Panathlon’s biggest month ever

Panathlon records its biggest ever month with an astounding 5081 pupils with disabilities and special needs taking part in our competitions in March.

Schools relish return of Panathlon pathway
Schools relish return of Panathlon pathway

With lockdowns over, Panathlon participation booms in many areas of the country with our pathway of local, county and regional returning. Cumbria is one of many rapid growth areas.

Panathlon bucks gloomy post-Covid trends
Panathlon bucks gloomy post-Covid trends

Our post-Covid ‘blended’ approach of delivering external and in-school activity engages well over 28,000 SEND pupils in its first full term – bucking national trends of declining participation amongst people with disabilities and special needs.

2021
New ‘blended’ approach a stunning success
New ‘blended’ approach a stunning success

Easing of Covid restrictions enables external competitions to return for the new academic year, running alongside the in-school Virtual programme. A staggering 18,000 pupils enter in the first half-term alone!

Research proves success of our pandemic response
Boccia

New independent research says Panathlon showed ingenuity and agility in swiftly changing its delivery model to get SEND pupils active during the pandemic.

Annual figures reveal scale of Virtual programme’s growth
Annual figures reveal scale of Virtual programme’s growth

Our end-of-year stats show 45,845 SEND pupils from 583 schools accessed sport and physical activity in 2020/21 despite the ravages of Covid-19 – proof of the astounding success of our Virtual programme.

Panathlon diversifies ‘virtual’ programme
Panathlon diversifies ‘virtual’ programme

We build on the success of the in-school ‘virtual’ activity by adding swimming, cricket and tennis to our programme, empowering school staff to adapt and deliver sessions themselves to suit their pupils’ needs.

Panathlon launches new at-home activities
Panathlon at-home challenges

Panathlon re-launches its multi-skills challenges for students to do in their homes and gardens in order to stay active and engaged during Covid-19 lockdowns and school holidays.

2020
Panathlon and SJP win Better Society award
Better Society awards

Panathlon and our partners St. James’s Place Charitable Foundation win the ‘Best Partnership with a National Children’s Charity’ prize at The Better Society Awards

New in-school programme hailed great success

Panathlon launches its post-Covid ‘virtual’ in-school competition format, with over 300 schools taking part in its first term

Panathlon year interrupted by coronavirus

Before the onset of Covid-19 and the closure of all schools, Panathlon was well on course for another record breaking year

Record-breaking nine events on one day
Record-breaking nine events on one day

Panathlon keeps breaking its own participation records and March 12th saw us stage NINE competitions on a single day

Jack Petchey’s support passes £1m milestone

As the partnership between Panathlon and the Jack Petchey Foundation enters its 15th year, funding received from our longest-serving supporter passes the £1million mark

2019
First National Special Schools Final

Panathlon delivers its first National Primary Final for Special Schools at the prestigious Stoke Mandeville Stadium

New research proves Panathlon impact

The full extent of Panathlon’s transformational impact on participating schools, competitors and Young Leaders is revealed by new independent research

Record 22,000 Panathlon competitors

Panathlon’s impact spread further than ever before in 2018/19 with almost 22,000 young people with disabilities and special needs benefitting from our competitive sport programmes

Two Awards in under 24 hours

Panathlon won two prestigious awards in less than 24 hours after collecting accolades from London Sport and the Sport & Recreation Alliance

Panathlon launch Xtend

Panathlon celebrates another landmark moment with the launch of our new competition for Key Stage 3 children, Panathlon Xtend, at the Costello Stadium in Hull

2018
Panathlon crosses its first border!

Panathlon celebrated a landmark moment as we staged our first ever competition outside of England, with Ysgol Pendalar of Caernarfon taking the honour of becoming our first ever Welsh Panathlon gold medallists

First National Primary Final

Panathlon’s first ever National Primary Final brought 17 teams from across the country to the Copper Box Arena in London with Great Barr Academy from Birmingham crowned the inaugural winners

17,970 competitors in 397 events

It was another record-breaking year of growth, new milestones and sporting achievements for Panathlon

Paralympic legends including Tanni Grey-Thompson praise Panathlon

GB Paralympians Tanni Grey-Thompson, Liz Johnson and Steve Brown attend our showpiece London Final at the Copper Box Arena and marvel at 200 participants coming together from across the capital

First National Swimming Final

Great Arley School from Lancashire win gold at the London 2012 Aquatic Centre in the National U14 Swimming Final– Panathlon’s first ever nationwide pan-disability competition

2017
Primary Finals take place around the country
Primary Finals take place around the country

Four early-season Panathlon Primary Finals up and down the country involved 236 students with disabilities and special needs representing their schools in competitive sport

13,150 competitors and 30% growth

Our ever-expanding calendar of competitions enabled 13,150 competitors to engage in competitive sport in 2016/17, up from 10,083 last year

New Post-16 event

Our first ever Post-16 competition saw 43 young people participate, 36 of whom had never competed in a Panathlon event before

2016
First ‘divisional’ finals take place

The winning teams from London, Essex and Berkshire contend our first ever South of England Multi-Sport Final.

We smash through the 10,000 mark

The number of young people with disabilities and SEN taking part in Panathlon events tops 10,000 for the first time in the 2015/16 academic year

Panathlon celebrates 20th birthday at City Hall

Panathlon celebrates its 20th anniversary at an event attended by more than 200 people who contributed to its mission to bring competitive sport to young people with disabilities

2015
27 Counties, 7,500 competitors and 1,350 young leaders

Record-breaking numbers for Panathlon once again as we expand our programmes across the country

Paralympians for out in force for Team Panathlon

A star-studded Team Panathlon competed at the London Triathlon, which featured on TV, and another 19 participants did the charity proud at the Excel Centre in London’s Docklands

First swimming finals at London 2012 venue

The London Aquatics Centre, venue for the swimming and diving at the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, was equally inspiring for the competitors in Panathlon’s first regional swimming finals

Patron Alex Brooker visits London Final

The prestigious Copper Box Arena, venue for London 2012, played host to our London Multi-Sport Final, with Patrons Alex Brooker, Liz Johnson and Steve Brown in attendance

St. James’s Place re-invest in Panathlon

St. James’s Place Charitable Foundation, who have supported Panathlon since 2009, re-commit to Panathlon with a further three years of funding

2014
First Primary Achievement Awards held

Two inspiring boys from Hounslow and Hillingdon jointly receive Panathlon’s inaugural Wembley National Stadium Trust Primary-Aged Achievers Award at Wembley Stadium

Panathlon hits the Olympic Park

Panathlon’s 2014 London Multi-Sport Final is our first final to be held at the state-of-the-art Copper Box Arena, venue for the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics

Woodland Group pedal to Paris for Panathlon

Twenty-one cyclists make it from London to Paris over four days covering 276 miles. It was the latest fundraising adventure by Woodland Group, based in Chelmsford, who have supported Panathlon since 2011

First football final at Wembley!

Panathlon’s first ever London Football Cup Final is held at Wembley Stadium Powerleague after a tough pre-qualifying competition

500 disabled swimmers compete in 2013

Liz Johnson, the triple Paralympic medallist swimmer, joins in the fun in East London as we celebrate passing 500 participants in our swimming programme in 2013

2013
First Outstanding Achievement Awards at Olympic Park

Hannah Olateju is crowned the Outstanding Achiever of 2013 at Panathlon’s annual awards ceremony,  presented by triple-Paralympic medallist Liz Johnson at the Olympic Suite at John Lewis Stratford City

Panathlon launch primary pilot

We introduce competitive Panathlon activities for primary-aged children through a range of skill-based sports suitable for younger pupils

Panathlon hosts final at ‘Birthplace of the Paralympics’

Panathletes from seven English counties compete at Stoke Mandeville Stadium, birthplace of the Paralympic Games, in a special double event

Panathlon features on BBC1 Breakfast TV

The Panathlon Central London Final, which involved 143 disabled young people competing in seven sports, appears on BBC Breakfast

2012
John Lewis invests Olympic donations

John Lewis in Stratford City underlines its commitment to supporting the local community in the wake of the London 2012 Games by donating to Panathlon

Panathletes road-test London 2012 athletics track

Panathlon competitors become the first disabled racers on the new Olympic track in an official test event ahead of the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games

Boris supports Panathlon

Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, announces that Panathlon will be at the centre of a unique sporting event at the new Olympic Stadium ahead of the summer’s Olympic and Paralympic Games

2011
Panathlon appears on Sky Sports.

Panathlon Challenge is shown on Sky Sports with the highlights of the London Final, and introduced by Danny Crates, Panathlon Patron and Paralympic Gold Medallist

Woodland Group support Panathlon

Proving it delivers much more than freight, the Chelmsford based Woodland Group became the first corporate sponsor of the Panathlon Challenge.

Young Leaders at Panathlon for the first time
Young Leaders at Panathlon for the first time

Panathlon takes place in London, Merseyside, Wiltshire, Kent & Essex, with the use of young Leaders for the first time.

2010
Boris Johnson awards Outstanding Achiever Awards in London
Boris Johnson awards Outstanding Achiever Awards in London

The Mayor of London Boris Johnson, Kate Hoey MP and Jack Petchey CBE attended an awards ceremony in recognition of outstanding individual achievement in Panathlon.

2,500 Panathletes in total

2,500 Panathletes in total

2009
Football Foundation invests

Football Foundation invests in multi-sport Panathlon with the addition of 500 disabled footballers involved, including Learning difficulty, visual impairments and powerchair users.

Panathlon expands to Kent

Panathlon expands to Kent thanks to funding from St. James’s Place Foundation and eight school partnerships benefit from receiving coaching and equipment funds.

2008
Panathlon expands to Essex

Panathlon expands to Essex thanks to new investment from the Jack Petchey Foundation with a visit from Danny Crates, recently returned from the Paralympics in Beijing.

Liz Johnson visits Panathlon

Liz Johnson visits Panathlon for the first time, after winning gold in Beijing a few months previously.

2007
Over 1,000 competitors involved.

Panathlon involve over 1,000 disabled competitors during the year in London and Merseyside -action here from one of our many competitions with partners at Greenbank Sports Academy.

2006
Disabled young people competitions only
Disabled young people competitions only

Panathlon focus all its efforts on competitions for disabled children having ceased delivery for non disabled children

2005
London Wide Final for disabled young People
London Wide Final for disabled young People

Team Bromley win the first Final ahead of arch rivals Croydon.

2004
Jack Petchey Foundation invests
Jack Petchey Foundation invests

Jack Petchey Foundation invests in Panathlon for the first time to expand the number of special schools involved across London.

Royal guest of honour
Royal guest of honour

HRH Prince Edward Earl of Wessex visits Panathlon Final at Crystal Palace and awards medals to the winners.

2003
First visit to Panathlon by Danny Crates
First visit to Panathlon by Danny Crates

The first visit to Panathlon by Danny Crates one of our Panathlon trustees to Eastway sports centre, now demolished for the Olympic Park. Danny awarded medals and inspired the competitors a year before he won gold in Athens.

Panathlon expands its disability programme
Panathlon expands its disability programme

Panathlon disability expands to South London, with events staged at Marjorie McClure school in Bromley, with other teams from Croydon, Greenwich and Kent.

2002
Sport England Invests in Panathlon
Sport England Invests in Panathlon

At a launch at Stockwell Park School, in Kate Hoey MP’s constituency, the Chair of Sport England, Sir Trevor Brooking, sees Panathlon in action alongside sponsor Royal & Sun Alliance

2001
52 competitions this year
52 competitions this year

Mainstream Panathlon competitions including London, Liverpool, Bristol and Leeds take place with the National Final won by Hackney Free from London held at Crystal Palace National Sports Centre.

Tanni Grey-Thompson first visit to Panathlon

Tanni Grey-Thompson comes to our Bristol Final, in a year when we expand our disability programme in London, Liverpool & Bristol.

2000
Millennium Final at Crystal Palace.
Millennium Final at Crystal Palace.

Panathlon (Mainstream) Final at Crystal Palace, involving our county winners from London, Liverpool, Bristol and a guest team from Milan in Italy

1999
First Panathlon for disabled young people takes place

Whitefields School in Barnet NW London, hosts our first special school Panathlon with schools from Westminster, Brent and Islington. Sports included, boccia, table cricket, polybat and athletics.

1998
Hackney Wins for the first time
Hackney Wins for the first time

Hackney Free School wins the London Final for the first time, beating Grey Court School from Richmond, Ashburton School from Croydon and Abbs Cross from Havering.

1997
Expansion to Liverpool for the first time
Expansion to Liverpool for the first time

Panathlon expands to involve 12 schools in Liverpool, with further investment from sponsor Royal & SunAlliance and Sportsmatch. Broadgreen School are our first Champions.

1996
Mainstream Panathlon for inner city disadvantaged young people launched
Mainstream Panathlon for inner city disadvantaged young people launched

The first ever Panathlon is held at Featherstone High School in Ealing. Across London there are 32 Schools involved competing in 9 Sports; Athletics, Badminton, Basketball, Chess, Cycling, Football, Netball, Orienteering, and Table Tennis.