Gallery: Bickerstaffe keep the Olympic legacy alive with new running track

The legacy of the Olympics is being kept alive at Bickerstaffe CE primary school, as it officially opened a brand new running track.

James Tartt, an elite runner from Merseyside cut the ribbon at the new facilities alongside pupils Lottie Brighouse -Jones, Olivia O’Brien and Sophie Ralfs who carried the flag for ‘Team GB’, having all been a part of the school’s running club since 2011. The rest of the school followed wearing the colours of red, white and blue.

Earlier in the morning James, who is currently training for the World Championships in London 2017, led a running session in which 23 children and 14 adults took part. He gave the runners some words of encouragement, saying: “Reach for the moon, and remember that if you don’t quite make it, you’ll still be amongst the stars!”

The new running track has been extensively fundraised by parents, teachers and Friends of Bickerstaffe School and was delivered by J Mallinson (Ormskirk) Ltd, sport field specialists. The track is now a reality and boasts 400 metres in length, with a shorter route of 200m available for infant children.

The track will be used within PE lessons to build up stamina and general fitness and for the running club before school. It has also been very popular at break times by both children and staff who want to get active.

Bickerstaffe Running Club is the legacy of the 2012 London Olympics. Started in summer 2011 by parent Mrs Kim O’Brien and class teacher Mrs Teachen, come rain or shine it has taken place every Tuesday and Friday morning at 8am since. In 2012 the running club collectively ran 2012 miles and since then the club has continued to flourish, with new children joining each year.

Mrs Hall, Headteacher said: “Our Olympic Pledge to: ‘Be determined to be the best that we can be!’ has spilled over into all aspects of school life. We can all learn so much from sport.  When running you are really running against yourself, striving to improve, and to do this you do need to develop mental toughness.

“At a time when we are concerned about both the physical and mental health of the nation’s young people, at Bickerstaffe School we feel that running provides a fantastic way to improve fitness and resilience, this then supports achievement and success in the academic subjects too.

“Our own running track will extend the opportunity to participate in this activity to all of our children, regardless of whether they can make the 8am start.”



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