Launch of Sunderland’s Olympic legacy

The launch of Sunderland Council Olympic progamme at Sunderland Winter Gardens. Sunderland Council Leader Paul Watson (front centre) with Councillor Mel Speding (left) and Councillor John Kelly (right) with some of the local athletes who attended the event.
The launch of Sunderland Council Olympic progamme at Sunderland Winter Gardens. Sunderland Council Leader Paul Watson (front centre) with Councillor Mel Speding (left) and Councillor John Kelly (right) with some of the local athletes who attended the event.
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WEARSIDERS are being urged to get active and create an Olympic legacy in Sunderland.

With the summer games in London just months away, Sunderland City Council has launched its “Sunderland in 2012” drive.

A programme of events will run from next month until September in the hope of igniting the spirit of the Olympics on Wearside.

Speaking at the launch of the events schedule at the Museum and Winter Gardens, in Mowbray Park, council leader Paul Watson said: “We want everyone in Sunderland to join in with the spirit of the Games and to feel part of the excitement of this once-in-a-lifetime chance to celebrate the Olympics and Paralympics on home turf.

“That is why we are launching Sunderland in 2012.

“The programme is not just about sport, it’s a chance to enjoy and be part of a major cultural celebration of the Games through a number of different events and activities.

“This includes libraries, heritage, dance, music, theatre, the visual arts, film and digital innovation.”

Sunderland AFC legend Len Ashurst, who is now chairman of the Sunderland Sport Fund, said: “I hope the Olympics will get more youngsters in the city involved in sport.

“When I was younger we didn’t have the distractions like computers that they do these days, so it’s a bit harder now.”

Performing arts group Hoop La La put on a mesmerising display including some elaborate routines while members of Sunderland District Table Tennis Club demonstrated “glow” table tennis.

Oxclose School pupil Robert Renton, 12, who is a member of the club, said he was excited by the Olympics coming to London.

“I’m a bit disappointed that it’s coming here when I’m this young, so I might not be able to enjoy it as much,” said the Washington youngster.

“I don’t know when it will come to England next.”

Robert’s mum Lorraine said: “I think there are a lot of kids who are interested in sport of some kind. The ones who aren’t seem to be a minority.

“I think it’s good what the council is trying to do.”

Sunderland City Council is hoping to sign up 2,012 new volunteers to be Sport Makers by the end of the programme.

Becoming a Sport Maker could mean creating a new team, booking a venue for a sporting activity or even taking part in recreational sport.

A convention on the initiative is being held at Sunderland University’s City Space facility on Thursday, February 16, from 6pm to 9pm.

For more on the Sunderland in 2012 programme, visit www.sunderlandin2012.co.uk, email sunderlandin2012@sunderland.gov.uk or call 561 4659.

With the summer games in London just months away, Sunderland City Council has launched its “Sunderland in 2012” drive.

A programme of events will run from next month until September in the hope of igniting the spirit of the Olympics on Wearside.

Speaking at the launch of the events schedule at the Museum and Winter Gardens, in Mowbray Park, council leader Paul Watson said: “We want everyone in Sunderland to join in with the spirit of the Games and to feel part of the excitement of this once-in-a-lifetime chance to celebrate the Olympics and Paralympics on home turf.

“That is why we are launching Sunderland in 2012.

“The programme is not just about sport, it’s a chance to enjoy and be part of a major cultural celebration of the Games through a number of different events and activities.

“This includes libraries, heritage, dance, music, theatre, the visual arts, film and digital innovation.”

Sunderland AFC legend Len Ashurst, who is now chairman of the Sunderland Sport Fund, said: “I hope the Olympics will get more youngsters in the city involved in sport.

“When I was younger we didn’t have the distractions like computers that they do these days, so it’s a bit harder now.”

Performing arts group Hoop La La put on a mesmerising display including some elaborate routines while members of Sunderland District Table Tennis Club demonstrated “glow” table tennis.

Oxclose School pupil Robert Renton, 12, who is a member of the club, said he was excited by the Olympics coming to London.

“I’m a bit disappointed that it’s coming here when I’m this young, so I might not be able to enjoy it as much,” said the Washington youngster.

“I don’t know when it will come to England next.”

Robert’s mum Lorraine said: “I think there are a lot of kids who are interested in sport of some kind. The ones who aren’t seem to be a minority.

“I think it’s good what the council is trying to do.”

Sunderland City Council is hoping to sign up 2,012 new volunteers to be Sport Makers by the end of the programme.

Becoming a Sport Maker could mean creating a new team, booking a venue for a sporting activity or even taking part in recreational sport.

A convention on the initiative is being held at Sunderland University’s City Space facility on Thursday, February 16, from 6pm to 9pm.

For more on the Sunderland in 2012 programme, visit www.sunderlandin2012.co.uk, email sunderlandin2012@sunderland.gov.uk or call 561 4659.

Twitter: @davidallison88