Sporting stars help open ‘magnificent’ centre

The new state-of-the-art Sutcliffe Park Sports Centre was officially opened by Greenwich council leader Councillor Denise Hyland.

She was joined by sport stars including Zoe Smith and Tosin Oke, as well as families and residents who enjoyed free taster sessions at the sports centre’s  new facilities.

Cllr Hyland said: “This is a magnificent building which will be an asset to every level of  sportsmen and sportswomen, from the skateboarder to the sprinter, from our schoolchildren to our oldest residents, from ordinary people just looking to get a bit fitter to athletes competing at the highest level.”

Oke is a track and field athlete who has competed at the highest level in the triple jump for both Great Britain and Nigeria.

He first began seriously competing with the Cambridge Harriers, who train at Sutcliffe Park.

The Harriers have long used the outdoor running track at Sutcliffe Park and will continue their association with the new sports centre and revamped outdoor track.

Oke said: “It’s a fantastic facility for athletes and there is all you need here to train at the highest level.

I think this sports centre will help the next generation of professional athletes to come through.”

Smith is the only English female weightlifter to have won medals at the Commonwealth Games and took part in her third Commonwealth Games, despite only being 23 years old.

It was her first visit to the new sports centre. She said: “I had heard good things about it before I came but I am genuinely surprised at how good it is.

There really is something for everyone.”

Residents were able to try their talents in the custom built BMX/Skatepark, the Clip and Climb wall and, for the very young ones, the Soft Play area.

The London Marathon Charitable Trust also provided financial support for the new Sports Centre.

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