Promising Derbyshire Dales athletes receive funding boost

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Some of the Derbyshire Dales’ most promising sports performers have been handed a share of £2,000 in grants from business network ICON to help chase their dreams.

The chosen 13 athletes have been selected to receive a grant of up to £250 each, which they can use to help meet costs such as travel, equipment, coaching fees or competition costs.

All of the athletes are tipped for further success in their respective sports, and are either already competing for England or Great Britain or are part of recognised national development squads or club academy structures.

Derbyshire Dales District Council will also provide each with free access to its leisure centres in Ashbourne, Bakewell, Matlock and Wirksworth worth £336 per head to further help them with their training.

Among the selected athletes are Tug of War duo Joe Birch and Alec Neville, duathlete and triathlete Tasmin Boam, wrestler Lewis Brown, cyclist Arthur Green, climber Edward Hamer and sailor Joshua Haynes.

Also being supported are archer Eva Henderson-Hirst Chinese martial arts exponent Sam Mak, shooter Caroline Povey, wrestler Shaun Thorpe, tennis player Victoria Allen and swimmer Stephanie Williams.

Coun Geoff Stevens MBE, Deputy Leader of Derbyshire Dales District Council, and Hayley Lever, Director of Derbyshire Sport which organises the ICON programme, met nine of the athletes to congratulate them during a presentation at the Arc Leisure Centre, Matlock on Monday (19th January).

“We were delighted when Caroline Povey put the Derbyshire Dales on the map by medalling at the Commonwealth Games last year with the help of ICON and it is great that with further support we are helping to provide she can compete for a place at the 2016 Olympics,” said Coun Stevens.

“It would be great to think that there are other ICON athletes from the area who could follow in Caroline’s footsteps by achieving success at the top level and we’re committed to supporting talented local athletes by providing free access to our leisure facilities across the district.”

Derbyshire Dales District Council and Derbyshire County Council are among 10 local authorities across the county who are members of business network ICON, which was set up by Derbyshire Sport as part of the work to create a lasting legacy from the London 2012 Games in Derbyshire.

Other members of the programme include Huub Design and Derby County FC.