More than 750 budding young athletes competed in the first London School Games pilot on Friday (30 June) as part of a new scheme to bring more competitive sport to schools.
The Games saw primary and secondary school students from seven central London boroughs competing in a number of Olympic and Paralympic sports including wheelchair basketball, boccia, table tennis, football, athletics, swimming and judo.
Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt and Olympic medallist Gail Emms opened the Games by lighting the School Games cauldron, they were joined at the event by Paralympic medallist and four times London Marathon winner David Weir as well as the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson.
“London has long been a great sporting capital, and Londoners recognise the power of competitive sport to inspire people and bring communities together,” said Mr Hunt. “The new School Games competition will use the power of the 2012 Games to get more children and young people playing competitive sport.”
National School Games
The London Festival held at Crystal Palace National Sports Centre is one of nine pilot events taking place across the country this summer ahead of the launch of the new national School Games competition in September which will give young people the chance to take part in a range of Olympic and Paralympic sports. Competitions will begin at school level and will lead to district, county and ultimately national-levels culminating in a national final in the Olympic Stadium in May 2012.