The organisers of Bury St Edmunds’ first Festival of Sport are promising activities for everyone from fitness fans to armchair enthusiasts when the nine-day events gets under way in September.
With dozens of have-a-go activities set to take place across the town centre, tickets will soon be on sale for the festival’s gala dinner at the Apex, with television and radio sports presenter, John Inverdale, as its special guest.
The Festival of Sport will begin on Saturday, September 12, which is when the Tour of Britain cycle race will come through the town, and will continue until the following Sunday (20th).
It is being organised by a partnership including Ourburystedmunds, which manages the Business Improvement District (BID), along with Abbeycroft Leisure and St Edmundsbury Borough and Suffolk County Councils. The group is chaired by Ourburystedmunds Chief Executive, Mark Cordell.
Councillor Joanna Rayner, St Edmundsbury Borough Council Portfolio Holder for Leisure, Culture and Heritage said: “This is a wonderful initiative that will encourage people to become more active or try something new, as well as bringing people into our beautiful town centre.”
As well as including the Tour of Britain stage, the Festival of Sport will also take in the opening Rugby World Cup match between England and Fiji at Twickenham, on September 18.
The gala dinner, with John Inverdale, takes place on September 14, and will also benefit the charity SportsAid, which supports Britain’s brightest athletes of the future.
The Theatre Royal is hosting and Ipswich Town Legends’ evening, on September 13.
Mark Cordell added: “The start of the Women’s Tour in Bury St Edmunds last month was a huge success for the town.
“It has now become a regular destination for the major cycle races.
“The Festival of Sport is a fantastic opportunity to build on that and celebrate all the other sports and activities that take place on a regular basis in the local area.
“A huge number of people put a lot of time and effort into grassroots sports clubs, and I hope this event will also give some of them the recognition they deserve.
There are still opportunities available for sporting groups who want to hold an event to coincide with the festival or get involved with the activities. Interested clubs should email email@example.com.