Paralympian backs new basketball hub

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Chesterfield based Paralympian Jonathan Hall is calling for more people in the area to try out wheelchair basketball.

A new community session in Chesterfield has helped to increase the number of places where people can take up the sport.

The session is open to all ages and abilities, wheelchair user or not, taking place on Tuesday evenings from 7-8pm at Chesterfield Tennis Club.

“The session in Chesterfield will help massively for anyone not able to travel to others clubs and also fill a gap between Sheffield and Derby,” said Jonathan, who played for Team GB at the 2008 and 2012 Paralympics.

“If there had been a club closer to me when I was growing up, it would have helped get me playing earlier and made mine and my family’s life a lot easier.

“Playing wheelchair basketball helped to change my life and give me so many opportunities. I would love to be able to find the next sporting star at these sessions.”

County Sports Partnership Derbyshire Sport has developed these sessions through their Sporting Chances, Sporting Choices project, funded by Sport England.

The project aims to get more people with a disability in Derbyshire playing sport and being physically active.

Already more than 2,000 people have taken part in wheelchair basketball as part of the project but project coordinators now want to see people taking part at the community sessions on a regular basis.

“It is brilliant to have Jon involved as a local ambassador of these wheelchair basketball sessions. His enthusiasm to see more people playing the sport is fantastic,” said Derbyshire Sport development officer Rachael Dyer.

“With Jon’s help we want to raise awareness of the playing opportunities that we have in Derbyshire so that more people can play. Whether someone has a physical impairment or has reduced mobility due to a knee or ankle injury, we want to see them trying the sport out.”

For more information please contact Rachael Dyer via Rachael.dyer@derbyshire.gov.uk or 07807 089845.