A team from the Open Door Centre on Swindon's Ferndale Road has won the grand final of a boccia tournament organised by Active Swindon for centres which look after people with disabilities.
Eight finalists representing four local day care centres took part in the knock-out rounds of a grand final at the Punjabi Community Centre. Open Door Flames, right, beat off some stiff competition from runners-up the One Step Tigers to lay their hands on the trophy.
The tournament was organised by Active Swindon as part of its activity programme for people with disabilities. Boccia is a sport much like bowls and boules where the object of the game is to position balls as close to the jack as possible. It is played sitting down so that people of all abilities can play it and do well.
Speaking after the event, Active Swindon??s Rich Whincup said, "this tournament has been great fun to organise. It is really rewarding to see the people who take part enjoying themselves and telling me how much they have been practicing for it.
"Our aim has been to combine increased activity levels with enjoyment and looking back on today I think we have managed to do that. The next step is to look ahead to the next tournament and make plans to turn this into an annual event."
Pat Winning, one of the managers at the Open Door Centre added, "we have had to buy our own boccia set as a result of this tournament because everyone enjoys it so much. The game gives them a chance to improve their boccia skills and enjoy the competitive nature of it. Everyone who took part said they were very proud to represent Open Door and really pleased they won."
Anyone wanting more information on Active Swindon??s activity programme for disabled people should contact Gladys Barr, Active Swindon Co-ordinator on 01793 708775.
Active Swindon is a lottery funded project which aims to increase the physical activity participation rates of residents in Swindon, Shrivenham and parts of North Wiltshire by 1% per annum. This is a national target for participation working towards 50% of the population being physically active by 2020 at a level which will have health benefits. (5 x 30 minutes per week for adults and 7 x 60 minutes per week for children). The project is delivered as a partnership between Swindon Primary Care Trust, Swindon Borough Council and the Great Western Community Forest.