Sport-loving Witchford Village College student Jess takes centre stage at School Games National Summit

PUBLISHED: 12:10 24 November 2018

Witchford Village College student Jess Lonnen at the School Games National Summit 2018  for the Youth Sports Trust. Picture: JO GORDON

Witchford Village College student Jess Lonnen at the School Games National Summit 2018 for the Youth Sports Trust. Picture: JO GORDON

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A fourteen-year-old from Witchford Village College took centre stage at a major sporting event alongside an Olympic athlete.

Witchford Village College student Jess Lonnen with Olympic gold medal winner Alex Gregory, who was the keynote speaker at the School Games National Summit 2018 for the Youth Sports Trust. Picture: JO GORDON.Witchford Village College student Jess Lonnen with Olympic gold medal winner Alex Gregory, who was the keynote speaker at the School Games National Summit 2018 for the Youth Sports Trust. Picture: JO GORDON.

Jess Lonnen was successful in her application as one of two young event hosts at the School Games National Summit 2018 for the Youth Sports Trust.

Jess has always loved sport, particularly horse riding and netball.

At Witchford Village College she is keen to get involved in any sporting activity and is a sports ambassador and leader, encouraging younger students (at WVC and other primary schools) to take part in sport. She is a member of the college’s sports committee and helps to run the netball club.

In the past Jess has competed in school games summer festivals and admired the young ambassadors presenting at the opening ceremony. This summer, she was given the opportunity to do it and made such an impression that her former head of physical education suggested she apply for the Young Hosts Development Program, which led to her hosting the national event.

The event is a meeting of school games organisers from around the country to discuss school games, hear inspirational speeches and take part in an awards ceremony.

This year the organisation enabled 2.3 million participation opportunities for young people at interschool events across the country.

Former international sprinter Jeanette Kwakye introduced the event and the keynote speaker was double Olympic gold medal winner Alex Gregory who shared the story of his sporting journey.

He won the medals in coxless 4’s, at London 2012 and Rio 2016.

Ali Oliver, chief executive of the Youth Sports Trust, said: “Jess did a fantastic job and her personality shone through.

“After the event, many participants had commented on the amazing job she had done.”

Suzy Broadhead, development manager of the Youth Sports Trust, said: “I hope Jess will use the experience to fuel her ongoing interest in both sport and presenting.

“I believe she will go far and many more opportunities will come your way.”

The celebration lunch took place at the Ricoh Arena in Coventry with an audience of around 700 people.

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