Athletics: New club is just what area needs to get off blocks

PUBLISHED: 12:02 17 February 2006 | UPDATED: 21:42 28 May 2010

GWYN Potts, the regional development co-ordinator for England Athletics, has backed the formation of a new athletics club in Fenland - an area he believes has taken a backward step in developing athletics. Potts said: The power to change things lies with

GWYN Potts, the regional development co-ordinator for England Athletics, has backed the formation of a new athletics club in Fenland - an area he believes has taken a backward step in developing athletics.

Potts said: "The power to change things lies with local government and only pressure on local authorities will end the lack of funding that has seen athletics suffer in Fenland.

"The governing bodies such as England Athletics and UK Athletics do not allocate funds but we will support local clubs in generating strategies to establish coaching and athletics facilities."

He added: "Central government has concentrated on refurbishing existing athletics tracks rather than create new ones.

"It is possible to get Lottery or Sports England grants but in Fenland's case, the only way to get funding is to pressure local government."

Potts supports The Queen's School's plans to develop coaching and believes it is a good first step. He said: "It is vital that we identify future coaches so that once a club is set-up, they are ready to train young athletes."

He added: "One area where England Athletics can provide funding is in covering the costs of training for those who wish to become qualified coaches."

Once established, a local club will also serve another function, as Potts explains: "It is imperative that pressure is put on the local government to provide funding and develop athletics facilities in Fenland.

"A club will create a focus point for local people who wish to get involved and I will attend and support any future public meetings.

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