Ashby Sport Fun Day 'highlighted the number of opportunities to get involved' - and encouraged youngsters to be more active

By Graham Hill

27th Jun 2022 | Local News

Organisers were impressed with the amount of youngsters taking part such as this group with Motiv8. All Photos: Ashby Nub News
Organisers were impressed with the amount of youngsters taking part such as this group with Motiv8. All Photos: Ashby Nub News

Ashby Sport Fun Day returned to the Bath Grounds yesterday (Sunday) - with the annual event praised for getting the town's youngsters active.

Last year, Ashby Sport was set up with a view to bringing the area's clubs together and working as one, rather than being separate.

After first Fun Day was held a year ago, it was adopted by Ashby de la Zouch Town Council and added to the events calendar.

Tug of War proved popular with adults and cildren alike

Large crowds came to the Bath Grounds for the occasion yesterday, which saw almost 30 of the town's clubs represented.

Visitors could 'have a go' at a chosen sport - even welly wanging was available - and a sizeable number of those getting involved throughout the day were children.

This is one of the objective of Ashby Sport.

It does not just want to bring in adults, but wants to introduce youngsters to sport in the town so that they stay with it for years to come.

There was a fun element to the day as well, with tug-of-war organised by Fitness Republic and spacehopper racing for children.

The weather stayed rain-free as well - unlike last year.

Welly wanging was also on offer for visitors to the Bath Grounds

Kenny Horn, one of Ashby Sport organisers, said: "It was a bit of a nightmare with the weather last year, but this time, fortunately, we had a really nice day.

"We saw people turning out in large numbers and we were absolutely delighted.

"There were maybe 27 or 28 clubs there, and it illustrates how many sporting opportunities there are in the town.

"It's an absolute delight to see so many clubs involved.

Ashby Mayor, Cllr John Deakin, also got involved on the day

"And in particular, if you see the number of clubs for kids that are involved with the clubs,.

"Motiv8 did a lot of demonstrations with children, and also Ashby Rugby Club have been working with young players.

"We also had two cricket matches taking place at the Ashby Hastings ground, both involving juniors.

"Ashby Sport comprises of around 35 different clubs, the question is can you create more impact as a collective rather than as in individual club? The answer is, without a doubt.

"That's why the initiative works so well, football rugby and cricket, of course, most people will know where they are. Put the little-known clubs do get a huge amount of exposure from events like this

Youngsters from Motiv8 staged a sparring demonstration in the boxing ring

"It's huge that Ashby Town Council are backing this event, a special word of thanks to them .

"They were there at 6:30am setting things up, and quite honestly, their help has been invaluable.

"This year. It was a conscious decision to approach the council early on to ask them if they would adopt this as an event in their events calendar, and that was a resounding yes.

"Moreover there is a budget they've allocated to us, so we are very very grateful."

The day was also attended by the Mayor and Mayoress of Ashby who spoke to various clubs at the Bath Grounds.

Mayor Cllr John Deakin said: "This is a very important event for young people, they will pick on a sport they actually like, and it will stay with them for life.

"Then let them develop as they want to develop.

Ashby Rugby Club were coaching young players at the event

"But also, my father-in-law discovered bowls at the age of 79. My mother-in-law is now an Ashby bowls widow.

"He spends a lot of his time there now, he's changed changed from fishing.

"But it's not only an individual's well-being, it's also community.

"There are all these different sports, such as Ashby Rugby Club which is an institution in the town, plus new sports as well.

"There's an archery club I didn't know about, but then you look at the boxing club who are developing children as young as four and teaching them the whole self-respect thing that boxing provides.

"There are two aspects, it's the individual and the community , add to that to the identity of the clubs in Ashby."

MP for North West Leicestershire, Andrew Bridgen, also attended the event and was impressed by the number of youngsters taking part.

Leo the Lion gave the punchbag some punishment

He said: "It was good to see so many young people there for the second Ashby Sport Fun Day.

"I spoke in Parliament about the debt the country owes to the young people, we really damaged them through the lockdown years, through their education and socialising.

"It's events like these that go someway to thinking we are back to normal.

Ashby Hockey Club also invited visitors to 'have a go'

"Young people have been affected the hardest through the Covid lockdown, so this is very good for them.

"We have the Bath Grounds, and we should use them more often, it's been a good event for the town and the surrounding villages."


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