Juniors jump through hoops for sporting chance

The Newlands Centre attached to Newlands Primary School in Romano Bridge hosts an Easter Basketball Day Camp for P1-P7 pupils.
The Newlands Centre attached to Newlands Primary School in Romano Bridge hosts an Easter Basketball Day Camp for P1-P7 pupils.

Basketball is making a big impact in the Borders, following recent sessions for youngsters, writes Fiona Scott.

A drive to find players of the future continued on a high as dozens of children stepped on court to try the sport for the first time.

Primary school pupils from all over the Borders joined a free one-day basketball camp to try out the sport and possibly join the recently created recreational basketball club established at the Newland Centre in Romanno Bridge.

Basketball is a fast emerging sport in the Borders and with CashBack for Communities funding, basketballscotland regional development officer Dave Evans is working in partnership with the local authorities to increase the opportunities for young people to play the sport while encouraging them to get involved in positive activities and healthy lifestyle.

“I have been working alongside Active Schools and supporting them in this venture,” explained Mr Evans.

“There have been several successful camps and cluster sessions taking place. The support from CashBack for Communities has been essential for my involvement.

“We are working to formalise a development programme in the Borders which includes installing a number of coaches and building opportunities for children in the area.

“The future is certainly looking bright for basketball within the area as the dedication from all partners within sport and schools is growing every week.”

At the most recent camp, 37 children aged five to 11 had a morning full of fun basketball drills, ball handling, passing, shooting and even played some games.

A session will be run every Thursday afternoon in the Newland Centre from 3.30pm until 4.30pm to allow all these children, and others, to keep practising the sport.

For more information on these sessions, please contact Derek Harkins on derekh@newlandscentre.org.uk or call 01968 660980.

Elsewhere, Mr Evans and active school co-ordinator Paul Murray have set up taster sessions at the Gytes Centre in Peebles, starting on April 29, with the aim of building a new basketball development club.

All children between five and 11 years old are welcome to join.

Contact Mr Murray on pmurray@bslt.org.uk for more information.

CashBack for Communities is a Scottish Government programme which invests funds recovered from the proceeds of crime in activities and programmes for young people across Scotland.