Olympian Louise Jukes launched a new sports partnership here at One on Wednesday 23rd January, aimed at raising the profile of handball in the county.
At the launch event – that was attended by over 100 people in a game where the ball can travel over 100 miles per hour – Louise reflected on the Olympics.
She said, “It (the Olympics) was an amazing time. One minute you would be eating your dinner on a table next to Andy Murray, and a few hours later you would see Usain Bolt walking around. But my highlight was definitely hearing the noise of the crowd in the first game that we played.”
Louise is currently playing professional handball for SK Aarhus in Denmark where her team are lying in mid table. She is unsure of her future playing professionally, saying, “I may have one more season left in me – I’m a bit unsure. However, whatever I decide, I want to try and give something back to the sport of handball and this is why I decided to support this launch.”
The launch of Ipswich Handball was co-ordinated through a partnership of England Handball, ITFC Charitable Trust and Suffolk Sport, who were able to fund the project through Sport England’s Olympic Legacy project, Sportivate.
The event encouraged those who attended to sign up to a six week course in handball with the aim of setting up an Ipswich team at the end of the programme.
Dave Hendrick is in charge of this exciting new community project for Ipswich. He said, “This is part of a much larger project to form a league of 14-25 year olds; work in this area has already begun with four High Schools already on board.”
“The coaches from ITFC Charitable Trust have been trained to take Handball out into the wider community via schools, to work with us in our endeavours to help make Suffolk one of the most active counties in 2013,” he added.
Ben Jackson, Sports Development Officer at Suffolk Sport also helped co-ordinate the event.
He said, “Using the Olympic legacy funding Sportivate, our aim is to develop handball in the county and make Ipswich the focal point for handball in Suffolk. This was the biggest launch (of handball) that we have ever had in the Ipswich area for a long time, and we were delighted with the turn out.”
Jenny Milsom, Vice Principal of ‘One’ (who hosted the event), said, “Our facilities were perfect for this occasion and we are delighted to be able to play a part in the development of sport in this county.”
For more details about the new Ipswich Handball weekly training sessions, every Wednesday between 6.15pm and 7.15pm ,contact Dave Hendrick from England Handball on 07990 744717 or email firstname.lastname@example.org