I AM TEAM GB
A sporting festival will take over the Ricoh Arena next month to celebrate the return of Britain’s Olympic heroes.
The venue has been chosen along with the sets of Coronation Street and Emmerdale by organisers of the nation’s biggest sports day, called I Am Team GB, to put on a variety of activities for families around the UK on Saturday, 27 August.
The one-day national event is being held to encourage people of all ages to try a new sport to mark the end of the Olympics and the start of the Paralympics, with ITV switching off their seven channels for one hour at 9.30am.
To celebrate the support the nation gives the athletes by playing The National Lottery, Team GB's returning Olympians will join famous faces from ITV at events across the UK. Over £80 million has been raised each year by National Lottery players to help fund elite athletes during the four-year build-up to the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.
In the Midlands, the sporting action will get underway in the Ricoh Arena’s Jaguar Exhibition Hall at 9.30am and will run until 3pm.
A bumper 17 different sports will be on offer for visitors, which will include Wasps Rugby Club and Coventry Bears teaming up to teach touch rugby skills and put on short games.
England Netball and Wasps Netball will offer demonstrations and coaching sessions, while The Lawn Tennis Association, along with Coventry North Warwickshire and Berkswell Tennis Club will provide mini tennis sessions.
Pop up golf and badminton will be provided by Coventry Sports Foundation and the Positive Youth Foundation will be hosting street cricket.
Other sports to look out for on the day also include football, , equestrian, athletics, judo, cycling, basketball, wheelchair basketball, gymnastics, street dancing, cheerleading and volleyball.
Andy Gibb, managing director at the Ricoh Arena, added: “We are thrilled to have been selected as one of the key venues to help the nation celebrate the achievements of our Olympians, and to be chosen to host such a variety of sports is testament to the venue’s flexibility.
“Sport is such a powerful force that brings communities together and it’s events like this that can inspire the next generation of athletes as we see with the Wasps community programme. We look forward to welcoming everybody on the day.”
The event is taking place in conjunction with the British Olympic Association (BOA), UK Sport and is supported by sport volunteering charity Join In.
Cllr Kamran Caan, Cabinet Member for Public Health and Sport at Coventry City Council, said: “It’s great news that Coventry has been chosen as a venue for I Am Team GB. This is a wonderful opportunity for people to get out of the house and away from the TV screen and try a sport.
“We all know how important it is to be active and healthy and what better way to get inspired to try something new than by the return of our Olympians?
“The Games hold a special place in Coventry’s heart since we were a host city in 2012 and I’m sure people will be cheering our athletes on in the Olympics and Paralympics and hopefully that could lead to a healthier, more active life for many.
“We will bring more and more events to the Coventry public by continuing to work with key partners across the city.”
For more information about taking part in I Am Team GB visit www.iamteamgb.com