Quicksticks festival fun at Walsham

OVER 100 children from primary schools in north Norfolk participated in the first North Walsham Hockey Club/North Norfolk Schools Sports Partnership Quicksticks Hockey Festival recently, hosted by Cromer High School.

OVER 100 children from primary schools in north Norfolk participated in the first North Walsham Hockey Club/North Norfolk Schools Sports Partnership Quicksticks Hockey Festival recently, hosted by Cromer High School.

Quicksticks is the new England hockey game for primary schools, and with kits funded by NNSSP, NWHC has led coaching sessions, provided Inset for teachers and organised inter-school matches in 10 local schools. The success of the Quicksticks programme was so great that the festival was organised to celebrate the talents of local children.

Schools involved were North Walsham JS, Mundesley JS, Bure Valley PS, Antingham and Southrepps PS, Worstead PS, Aldborough PS, Cromer JS, Northrepps PS, The Belfry PS Overstrand and Millfield PS.

On the day of the tournament, each team played six matches in a league and then play-offs.


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'We have seen some fabulous hockey today,' said Mary Cheesman, NWHC junior section co-ordinator and Quicksticks tutor. 'It has been inspiring to see the children's skills develop. There is great talent in our schools and this has been an opportunity for some children to try a sport which they hadn't experienced before and realise that they can play it. They can now continue to develop those skills at club training.

'The support of teachers and teaching assistants in schools has been outstanding. They have embraced the programme and run away with it.'

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The day was not only about success on the playing front. With a core of adult club members to guide and support, 15 of the club's young leaders from Cromer High School, Sheringham High School, North Walsham High School and Paston College played a huge role in running the tournament.

They attended planning meetings, set up and cleared up after the event, umpired, supported and looked after the teams to make sure that every child had a positive experience and that the event ran smoothly. The young leaders were a credit to their club and schools; they rose to the challenge magnificently.

'This was a great day for hockey,' concluded NWHC chair Jo Todd. 'This is something we shall build on and develop. Its success is a testament to the strong link which exists between North Walsham Hockey Club, North Norfolk Schools Sport Partnership and Cromer High School.'

The final positions were hotly contested with goal difference proving the deciding factor in many cases.

Congratulations to Bure Valley and Mundesley Junior School Black Panthers who finished in first and second places respectively and will go on to represent north Norfolk at the county finals in April.

All the teams, however, deserve commendations for the way in which they played. 'When are the next matches ?' players asked.

Roll on summer hockey!

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