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School Commended in 2012 Aviva and Daily Telegraph School Sport Matters Awards

Bolton School has been commended in the Independent School of the Year category at the 2012 Aviva and Daily Telegraph School Sport Matters Awards.

Former Olympic gold medallist Sally Gunnell and England Rugby World Cup winner Will Greenwood were the afternoon’s hosts. Sally Gunnell said: “I was impressed to read about Bolton School’s community approach to sport. Their Sports and Football festivals will have inspired so many kids from the local area. I think it’s great when high achieving schools like this one are prepared to look well beyond the school gates with their passion for sport.”

Two high profile Bolton School athletes, Emma Saunders, a Commonwealth Games silver and bronze medal swimmer, and Oliver Walker, a European triathlete and national swimming medallist, accompanied by Mr Trevor Pledger, Director of Partnerships, attended the 2012 School Sport Matters Awards Ceremony at the Lord's Cricket Ground in London. A gala luncheon preceded the presentation of ten awards given by a range of prestigious sports personalities, including Jessica Ennis, Christine Ohuruogu, Richard Whitehead and Zoe Smith.

Oliver Walker, aged 17, said: "I enjoyed the day a lot and got to talk to a number of famous people. I spoke with Tom Daley about A level study, he is in Year 13 just like me at his school and Emma, who starts studying in America in December, spoke in detail with Christine Ohurugou about universities in the US."

The School's Trevor Pledger said: "We very much see ourselves as part of the sports partnership in Bolton, helping deliver sport for the young people of Bolton. Our regular football and sports festivals attract hundreds of children from across the borough. We also share our facilities, hosting netball, rugby, swimming, football and water-polo events for local schools." 

Only two schools in the country came above Bolton School, Plymouth College, Tom Daly’s school, which boasts three other Olympians, and Victoria College, Jersey.

The School Sport Matters campaign, instigated by The Daily Telegraph seven years ago with Aviva as a sponsorship partner, celebrates everything that is exemplary in school sport and physical education. The level of interest in 2012 was astounding – thanks in no small part to the influence and inspiration of the Olympic and Paralympic Games – and gold, silver and bronze medallists from both attended as presenters and award winners.

The 250 word article summarising the School's contribution to sport over the 2011-12 year is below:

"Bolton School offers a vast range of sporting opportunities for its pupils and the local community. 

We share our facilities in many ways, hosting football, netball, rugby, swimming and water-polo events for local schools. Last year, our Sports Festival involved over 30 primaries and our Football Festival, which ran over 2 days, attracted 500 local children.  This summer we were a sponsor of the Bolton 2012 Games, which saw 2,000 children enjoy 40 sporting events. We were also proud to see former pupils at the London Games. Sir Philip Craven, former Old Boy and President of the International Paralympic Committee, sat alongside the Queen at the opening ceremony of the Paralympic Games and we have already had a visit from Old Boy Ed Scott, who played in goal for GB’s Water Polo Team. Old Girl, Rachel Flanders, proudly carried the Olympic Torch past the School prior to the Games. The School is an ISFA Focus School and an MCC Hub School. 

Sport at the School serves a dual purpose, to encourage participation at all levels but also to develop elite athletes through our Talented Register. This year the School won a national U15 Cricket Final and was runners-up in the national ISFA Cup Final. Junior Boys won both the AJIS U11s’ Football and Cricket Cups. There has been much individual and team success for girls and boys at regional and national level in hockey, dressage, biathlon, rugby, netball, tennis, athletics, lacrosse, swimming, cricket, karate, ju-jitsu, chess and football."

Emma Saunders and Oliver Walker meet GB Olympian Jessica Ennis

Emma Saunders and Oliver Walker meet GB Olympic gold medallist Jessica Ennis

Sally Gunnell and Will Greenwood were the event hosts

Christine Ohuruogu spoke with Emma about studying in the US

Oliver and Emma with Tom Daly

Oliver and Emma with Tom Daly