Hundreds of Erewash schoolchildren enjoy badminton festival

BUDDING BADMINTON PLAYERS -- youngsters from Kensington Primary School, Ilkeston, who took part in the badminton festival.
BUDDING BADMINTON PLAYERS -- youngsters from Kensington Primary School, Ilkeston, who took part in the badminton festival.

Teachers from Ilkeston have heaped praise on a schools’ badminton festival that enabled more than 350 youngsters from across Erewash to take part.

The event saw many of the pupils compete at Rutland Sports Park in the town, while the rest participated at Long Eaton School.

And Nicky Godridge, a teacher at Hallam Fields Junior School in Ilkeston, said everyone had thoroughly enjoyed taking part.

She said: “The badminton festival was bustling with activity and buzzing with enthusiasm. It generated lots of interest and questions among the children who now want to play more badminton.”

Her words were echoed by Elaine Stokoe, a teacher at Kensington Junior School, in Ilkeston, who said the festival was very well organised.

She added: “The children were all very engaged in the activities. Many of them hadn’t played badminton before, but they are now keen to keep playing.”

Sports leaders from Long Eaton School, Ormiston Ilkeston Enterprise Academy and Kirk Hallam Community Academy supported the badminton festival.

Former Team GB badminton player Anthony Clark attended the festival at Long Eaton School, giving the youngsters tips on how to play and setting challenges or them.

The festival was organised by the Erewash School Sport Partnership, whose development manager, Rhian Lilley, felt that the event was a resounding success.

She said: “The idea was to give year-five and year-six pupils the opportunity to have a go at playing badminton, a sport which they might not have had the chance to try before.

“It also provided the teachers with some inspiration and gives them the chance to see how they could organise badminton activities in school.

“We were really lucky to have Anthony Clark at Long Eaton. He couldn’t believe what we had organised. We would also like to thank the sports leaders from Ormiston, Long Eaton and Kirk Hallam, who were great.”

Erewash School Sport Partnership is a group of 46 schools working together to develop PE and sporting opportunities for all young people.

Its core priority is to improve the quality and quantity of PE and sport in schools.

Too often, PE and sport are dismissed as lessons to be avoided by schoolchildren. But the partnership aims to engage, motivate and include as many young people as possible in a positive PE and sport experiences.