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Starter’s orders for Bury St Edmunds Festival of Sport...

Sports groups and organisations in and around Bury St Edmunds are being urged to snap up the remaining opportunities to be part of this summer’s Festival of Sport in the town.

This year the nine day event will launch on Saturday July 9 with physical activities and challenges in Charter Square. The weekend also sees the finals at Wimbledon, the Euro 2016 Football Final in Paris as well the British Grand Prix at Silverstone. Locally, the women-only cycle challenge at Nowton Park, Women on Wheels takes place on Sunday. For the rest of the following week it’s an opportunity for grass roots clubs in the town to hold special events or taster sessions to encourage new members.

The Festival of Sport partnership includes the Business Improvement District (BID) organisation Ourburystedmunds, along with Abbeycroft Leisure and St Edmundsbury Borough and Suffolk County Councils. The group is chaired by Ourburystedmunds Chief Executive Mark Cordell who said: “The Festival of Sport was a great success last year offering a range of activities – and it helped Bury St Edmunds win the title of Suffolk’s Most Active Town. I was delighted that so many of the town’s sports clubs and teams supported the event and hopefully raised their own profile as well. We’re very pleased that a number are now making preparations to be involved this year too.

“Now we want clubs to come forward to let us know what they would like to do during this week and we’ll try to help them achieve that. There will be a dedicated Festival of Sport website listing all the events taking place and opportunities for them to promote what they are doing.”

Among the confirmed activities so far in the festival are a 5km run organised by Positive Steps on Tuesday 12 July and the Street Velodrome, which will be in Charter Square from July 15-17. It will offer members of the public a chance to have a go for free on the Saturday and will host a televised regional competition for professional cyclists on the Sunday. Also available at the Apex will be baby ballet, Mums Fit HIIT, Tai Chi and Yoga.

Ian Evans from Abbeycroft Leisure added: “I’ve had expressions of interest from groups as diverse as dance organisations to swimming clubs and the Suffolk FA but in order to give events the maximum promotion within the event we need them to specify when they would like to hold their Festival of Sport activity so that we can ensure a wide range across the week. It’s great to have such enthusiasm for the festival again this year and more generally for keeping active in Bury St Edmunds.”

Sports clubs and groups who want to register their interest in the Festival of Sport should email mark.cordell@ourburystedmunds.com.

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2nd Floor, 2 Woolhall Street, Bury St Edmunds, IP33 1LA

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