Special Olympics GB is delighted to confirm its 2017 National Summer Games – the 10th in history of the organisation – will be held in Sheffield from Monday 7th August until Friday 11th August 2017.
The announcement comes as the opening ceremony is exactly three years away. It will be the second time that the Special Olympics GB National Summer Games have been held in the ‘Steel City’ – the last time was in 1993.
Venues for the Games will include the Sheffield Hallam University City Athletics Stadium; Sheffield City Trust’s Ponds Forge International Sports Centre; Hillsborough Leisure Centre; Concord Sports Centre; Graves Tennis and Leisure Centre; the English Institute of Sport Sheffield and Forge Valley School – all helping to host the UK’s biggest disability sports event in 2017.
Special Olympics GB is the largest registered charity providing year-round sports training and competition opportunities for people with intellectual (learning) disabilities. Almost 1.2 million people in the UK (2% of the population) have an intellectual disability.
Special Olympics GB’s National Summer Games is the showpiece domestic event every four years for the organisation and its athletes.
In this country, Special Olympics Great Britain serves over 8,000 registered athletes annually through almost 150 volunteer-led local clubs and 19 regions. Special Olympics GB is also a registered charity and is supported annually by individual and corporate donations.
Councillor Julie Dore, Leader of Sheffield City Council, said: “I am absolutely delighted that Sheffield has been selected to host the Special Olympics GB National Summer Games in three years’ time.
“The decision is testament to the fact that Sheffield is a great sporting city, home to the sort of world-leading venues that befit a highly prestigious event such as this.
“From world-class venues such as the English Institute of Sport and Ponds Forge, to the multi award-winning Hillsborough Leisure Centre, Sheffield really does have it all.
“However, this isn’t just about places, but about people. ‘Sheffielders’ are well known for their love of sport, in what is our welcoming and inclusive city.
“This is another opportunity for our communities to get involved in a wonderful celebration of all things sporting. We estimate the economic benefit hosting the games in Sheffield will be in the region of £1.5m.”
Sheffield City Council will be delivering the event in partnership with Sheffield International Venues (SIV), which runs key sites such as the English Institute of Sport and Ponds Forge. Marketing Sheffield will be leading on the accommodation aspect of the Games.
Karen Wallin, Special Olympics GB’s CEO, said: “We are thrilled to be heading back to Sheffield. We expect in the region of 2,000 athletes and 500 voluntary coaches – supported by a further 500 volunteers and estimated 5,000 family members – to visit Sheffield in the summer of 2017 for our biggest national event which takes place every four years.
“We are looking forward to the support of the local people and businesses of Sheffield as this very significant sporting event will require a large amount of assistance and energy.
“We are sure that the great City of Sheffield will provide a very successful and hugely memorable event for our athletes, their families, coaches and volunteers.”
TIMETABLE – 2017 SPECIAL OLYMPICS GB NATIONAL SUMMER GAMES IN SHEFFIELD
Monday 7th August: Athletes arrive in Sheffield
Tuesday 8th August: Competition & Opening Ceremony
Wednesday 9th August: Competition
Thursday 10th August: Competition
Friday 11th August: Competition & Closing Ceremonies
Saturday 12th August: Athletes Depart Sheffield