Helping hand for High Peak’s sporting talent

IN THE SPOTLIGHT -- James Machon, the Castleton skier who has received financial backing. (PHOTO BY: Mike Egerton/PA Wire).
IN THE SPOTLIGHT -- James Machon, the Castleton skier who has received financial backing. (PHOTO BY: Mike Egerton/PA Wire).
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Some of High Peak’s most promising sporting talent can look forward to a brighter future after being handed financial backing through the ICON bursary programme.

A total of 15 athletes from the area are among 127 across the county who will receive up to £250 of the £22,925 fund raised through Derbyshire Sport’s business network.

They will also receive free leisure passes in the area where they train and get access to valuable public relations exposure.

Among the High Peak elite are Castleton skier James Machon and also Buxton swimmer Abbie Wood. The others on the funding list are: Danielle Allsop (Chinese martial arts) from New Mills, George Bloor (golf) from Chapel-en-le-Frith, Scott Brelsford (judo) from Glossop, Charlie Craig (cycling) from Hayfield, Thomas Craig (cycling) from Hayfield, Alastair Gill (canoeing) from Chapel-en-le-Frith, Elizabeth Gould (shooting) from Buxton, Eric Ham (judo) from Hadfield, Joel Leighton (swimming) from Hope Valley, Ellen Robbins Wilkinson (fencing) from Bradwell, Katie Toft (cycling) from Chinley, Jaime-Leigh Whitaker (judo) from Glossop and Sarah Whittick (lacrosse) from Chapel-en-le-Frith.

ICON was set up by Derbyshire Sport as part of the work to create a lasting legacy in the county from the London 2012 Olympic Games. The bursaries have been made possible by the contributions of all ten local councils in Derbyshire, plus several businesses. Applicaants must be representing their country, have won a national championship medal or be part of a recognised development squad.

Director of Derbyshire Sport, Ilana Freestone, said: “It’s only through the continued support of the ICON programme from our business members that we are able to give so many athletes a helping hand, so we are very grateful to them. There is a fantastic spread of sports and ages being backed by the programme, and we wait with bated breath to see what these champion performers can achieve.”