Everybody is a winner at ‘Olympics’

Gateway Olympics held in Acton nr Sudbury. Sports competiton for adults with learning disabilities. A goal is scored at a Hockey match. ANL-150628-161016009
Gateway Olympics held in Acton nr Sudbury. Sports competiton for adults with learning disabilities. A goal is scored at a Hockey match. ANL-150628-161016009
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People with special needs from Suffolk, Essex and Norfolk took part in a unique sporting event in Acton this weekend.

The Gateway Olympics was held at Acton Village Hall on Saturday.

The competitors came from Gateway Clubs from Sudbury, Braintree, Woodbridge, Colchester, Dereham and Haverhill.

The clubs are independent charities that provide social clubs and activities for adults with learning disabilities.

Events making up the sporting extravaganza included adapted versions of curling, hockey, archery and javelin, as well as some less conventional games, such as a chariot race and a wet water relay.

As with all Olympics, the day started with a procession of competitors which was led by the Phoenix Marching Band from Great Cornard.

Sudbury mayor Jack Owen was also on hand to lend his support and to present medals to those finishing in the top places, even having his own try in the chariots.

John Philips, chairman of Sudbury GoStart which helped provide transport to the event and who also chairs the Sudbury Gateway Club, said: “The event was a great opportunity for people to try out some new sports and have fun at the same time.

“This is a fantastic day, which sees scores of members from Gateway Clubs across the area take part in fun, sporting events.

“The members had a great time and are very proud of their achievements.

“This is a fantastic example of different clubs and transport providers working together to create a memorable day.”