A special football tournament for special schools

Tuesday, 31 October 2017

By Contributed Item
in Local People

Pupils from all over south Wales have been helping to inject some life into a special schools’ football league.

Many schools struggle to meet the demands of regular football but the festival is a competitive boost and welcomed by the many who took part.

The South Wales Special Schools’ Soccer 11 -a- side Challenge Festival is an annual event which, for the past 18 years since its inception, has been organised by Rtn Edgar Burt of the Rotary Club of Bridgend and Heronsbridge School; and sponsored by past Rotarian Derek Gaynor of the Gaynor Group.

Over 100 players and reserves from eight special schools across south Wales took part in the festival (Heronsbridge, Woodlands, Ysgol Bryn Castell (YBC), Headlands, Penybryn, Hendrefelin, Greenfield and Maes Gwyn.

The eight schools were divided into two pools with YBC and Woodlands School winning the pools and going on to the final.

Ysgol Bryn Castell (Brynmenyn) won the final to lift the trophy with Woodlands as runners-up.

The award for the most improved team of the festival went to Woodlands School from Cardiff and the ‘Player of the Tournament’ Shield was presented to Cain Dickenson of Ysgol Bryn Castell. The winners of the Tony Phillips ‘Fair Play’ memorial shield were Greenfields School from Merthyr Tydfil.

The day was also one to remember a very special Rotarian and past president of the Rotary Club of Bridgend, Tony Phillips, who passed away some 10 years ago. Tony had helped Heronsbridge School immensely over many years and was very active in his support.

In his memory the shield is awarded to the team which most exemplifies the spirit in which the glorious game should be played.

The Mayor of Bridgend County Borough Council, Coun Pam Davies Mayor (accompanied by her consort Tudor Davies) was on hand to present the winners shields and a medal to every player assisted by Rotarian Gillian Hale, chair of the Rotary Club of Bridgend Youth Services committee and Rotarians Edgar Burt, Hopkin Joseph and Alan Reeks.

The Rotary Club of Bridgend is very grateful to all who supported the festival, especially Derek Gaynor of the Gaynor Group for sponsoring the event, to all of the schools’ staff who brought/ supported/coached their teams, acted as match referees and ran the lines, to the head and Richard Howe and the rest of the staff of Heronsbridge School who hosted the event, and to the Mayor for attending.

CAR

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