Month: September 2016

Pitreavie Junior Group

Interest in Disability Athletics Never Been Stronger in Fife

The interest in run, jump and throws and performance athletics across Fife has never been stronger. Disability Sport Fife (DSF) lead athletics coaches backed up by a team of excellent volunteers are offering quality sessions in St Andrews, Glenrothes and Dunfermline with ever increasing weekly attendances of athletes of all ages and abilities.

Mainstream athletics Clubs Fife AC, Pitreavie AAC, Anstrer Haddies and Dunfermline Track and Field then offer an athlete pathway for those individuals with performance potential and commitment. The relationship between DSF and the clubs in Fife is excellent and the success of Owen Miller, Sam Fernando and Derek Rae from Fife AC and Michael Mellon from Pitreavie AAC is an indicator of the strength of the relationship.

A couple of years ago DSF coach Pamela Robson was appointed to work with up and coming wheelchair racer Callum Sloan on Thursday afternoons at Pitreavie Athletics Centre with support from the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust. The session was then opened up to other young athletes with a physical or sensory impairment and senior wheelchair athletes. The session has really taken off and is supported by key volunteers like athlete mum Gayle Sloan who is now about to take her Level 2 Athletics coaching qualification through Scottish Athletics.

NHS physiotherapist Katie Kinch has played a lead role in identifying new members for this session and the two FUNdamentals sessions offered to DSF members at Carnegie Leisure Centre and the Michael Woods Sport and Leisure Centre. DSF is proud of the many different opportunities that are available to young participants of all levels of ability with a disability across Fife.

Photo: participants with a physical or sensory impairment who attend the Thursday run, push, jump and throws session at Pitreavie Athletics Centre

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

Woodmill High School

Woodmill HS Retain Russell Hogg Trophy

Woodmill HS swimmers retained the Russell Hogg Trophy at the 38th Inter Schools Swimming Gala for pupils with additional support needs held at Lochgelly HS and organised by Disability Sport Fife (DSF).

The 59 event swimming programme incorporated 3 very exciting relays at the end of the gala won by Madras College (girls) and Woodmill HS (boys). Other schools that participated were Balwearie HS, Glenrothes HS, Kilmaron, Bell Baxter HS, Lochgelly HS, Levemouth Academy and Queen Anne HS. The Queen Anne HS pupils were participating in their first ever DSF event.

Woodmill HS pupils topped the table with 82 points, Balwearie HS finished second with 59 points and the home team Lochgelly HS took third with 53 points. DSF will select the Fife team for the Scottish Junior Swimming Championships organised by Scottish Disability Sport at Tollcross Aquatics Centre on Wednesday 23rd November from the results at the Inter Schools Gala.

Callum Donaldson (Woodmill HS) and Holly Jane Gray (Madras College) were voted top boy and top girl of the gala.

As always at a swimming event DSF was well supported by volunteer officials from local swimming clubs and on this occasion by school ambassadors from Lochgelly HS. Assistant Rector Sam Stewart presented medals to race winners and Julie Hogg presented the Russell Hogg Trophy to Woodmill HS swimmers.

Photo: Woodmill HS swimmers

Richard Brickley MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

Ruari Logan

Record Entry for Glasgow Tournament Following Rio

In the wake of Gordon Reid’s historic Rio Paralympic Games gold and silver medals and subsequent rise to No. 1 in the men’s singles world rankings, wheelchair tennis in Scotland has another landmark to celebrate this weekend with a record 35 players set to compete in the Glasgow Wheelchair Tennis Tournament at Scotstoun Leisure Centre on 1st and 2nd October.

Reigning Australian Open and Wimbledon champion Reid, who was named Para-Sport Athlete of the Year at the Scottish Sports Awards on Wednesday night, began his wheelchair tennis career at regular sessions at Scotstoun Leisure Centre in 2005 and played competitively for the first time at the corresponding Glasgow tournament 11 years ago, winning the B Division singles event.

This year’s Glasgow tournament is the last of nine events in the Tennis Foundation’s National Wheelchair Tennis Series for 2016 before the National Finals and Celebration Weekend in Gloucester in December.

Winners of five of the previous eight main draw singles events at National Wheelchair Tennis Series events across the UK are among the entries in Glasgow, with B Division and Novice draws and a mini orange event scheduled for Sunday for the youngest players attracting more than 20 players.

Entries include Reid’s fellow former Paralympian Kevin Simpson, now Wheelchair Tennis Engagement Officer for Scotland, Peter Moore and Ryan Macdonald, all three of whom were among those playing at Scotstoun when Reid discovered wheelchair tennis in 2005. The new generation of Scottish players also among this weekend’s Glasgow entry include National School Games gold medallist Ruairi Logan.

“We are really excited about the tournament this weekend in Glasgow. With over 30 players due to compete, this will be a record for a wheelchair tournament in Scotland. This is down to the Gordon Reid effect that has raised the profile of wheelchair tennis and encouraged people to play the sport. We have players coming from all four corners of the UK and we can’t wait,” said Andrew Raitt, Tennis Scotland Regional Development Manager South West and Disability Lead..

“The Tennis Foundation National Wheelchair Tennis Series caters for players of all abilities and is the ideal introduction to competitive tennis for new players in a fun and friendly environment. Gordon is just one of our Paralympians to follow this pathway and we hope his story and success will continue to inspire many more new players,“ said Liz Terry, Tennis Foundation Disability Competitions Manager.

Photo courtesy of the Tennis Foundation: Ruari Logan

Sammi Kinghorn

Team Scotland Award for SDS Disability Inclusion Training

Scottish Disability Sport’s (SDS) innovative Disability Inclusion Training (DIT) programme was announced as the winner of the Legacy 2014 Award at the Team Scotland Scottish Sports Awards in Edinburgh last night (28 Sep). Over 600 people joined the celebrations at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre, where the evening was hosted by double Olympic Gold medallist Shirley Robertson, OBE and comedian Fred MacAulay. Fresh from her exploits at the Summer Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Paralympian and SDS DIT tutor Sammi Kinghorn took to the stage to receive the award from Minister for Public Health & Sport, Aileen Campbell MSP and sportscotland Chief Executive Officer, Stewart Harris.

The DIT is designed to increase the confidence and competence of education staff to include pupils with disabilities within physical education and extra-curricular activities. The theory element of the course tackles issues such as communication, terminology, inclusion models and disability spectrum issues. The practical section deals with inclusion in a variety of settings including warm ups, fun games, core skills and team sports. In the last year alone, SDS has delivered 71 Disability Inclusion Training courses involving 1,047 candidates.

Commenting on the award, SDS Coaching & Development Manager, Heather Lowden said;

“We are absolutely delighted to have received the Legacy 2014 Award. SDS is extremely proud of its Disability Inclusion Training programme which has made significant inroads to ensuring that teachers and education staff are given support and knowledge ensure the affective inclusion of pupils with disabilities in curricular and extra-curricular activities across Scotland”.

With more than 50 Scottish Olympians and Paralympians from the recent Games in Rio in attendance, the Team Scotland Scottish Sports Awards was a star-studded celebration of their outstanding achievements as well as the success of individuals, schools, clubs and teams across the whole of Scottish sport.

Gordon Reid was also amongst the awards on the evening, winning the Para-sport Athlete of the Year, following a first Grand Slam singles title at the Australian Open, Wimbledon singles and doubles titles and Paralympic gold and silver.

Dunbar’s triple Paralympic medallist in athletics, Maria Lyle, also took the Sir Peter Heatly Trophy for the Young Athlete of the Year.

The full list of the Award Winners on the evening were as follows;

Scottish Sportsperson of the Year – Emirates Lonsdale Trophy
Andy Murray OBE, Tennis

Male Athlete of the Year – sponsored by Commonwealth Games Scotland
Andy Murray OBE, Tennis

Female Athlete of the Year – sponsored by EDF Energy
Heather Stanning MBE, Rowing

Para-Sport Athlete of the Year – sponsored by CGI
Gordon Reid, Wheelchair Tennis

Team of the Year – sponsored by PSL / Canterbury
GB Davis Cup Team, Tennis

Coach of the Year – sponsored by University of Stirling
Ben Higson & Steven Tigg, Swimming

Sporting Moment of the Year – sponsored by The Scottish Sun
Hibs score last minute goal to end 114 year wait for a Scottish Cup title – Football

Young Athlete of the Year – sponsored by EDF Energy
Maria Lyle, Para-Athletics

Sports Leader of the Year – sponsored by Brand Oath
Richard Thomas, Boxing

Governing Body of the Year – sponsored by Bluefin Sport
Scottish Athletics

Community Hub, Club or School of the Year – sponsored by sportscotland
Aviemore Community Sports Hub

Legacy 2014 Award – sponsored by Legacy 2014
SDS Disability Inclusion Training

Lifetime Achievement – sponsored by Commonwealth Games Scotland
Katherine Grainger CBE, Rowing

Team Scot of the Year – sponsored by European Championships 2018
Steph Inglis, Judo

Norma Buist Schools Swimming Gala

Schools from across Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire were bright and early at Cults Swimming Pool for the Norma Buist Swimming Gala on Thursday 22nd September.  This gala is the qualifier for the National Learning Disability Junior Championships held at Tollross International Swimming Centre on 23rd November.   The gala also acts as a warm up event for our athlete with a physical and/ or sensory impartments who will compete at the national championship in Grangemouth on 2nd November.

The event was heavily support by both the active schools teams in Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire who took on many of the officiating responsibilities for the event.  Many thanks must also go to Marie Cheyne who pulled together the programme of events for the day to ensure the gala ran smoothly.

There were some great swims on the day with lots of new faces as some of the older swimming have now left school and moved into senior swimming and will compete at the Mary Duncan Swimming Gala to be held once again in March at Fraserburgh Swimming Pool.

39 children attended from 7 different schools.  With 28 of these children have now been selected to be part of team Grampian travelling to the national championships.

Thanks go to all the staff and volunteers on the day to make the gala possible.

Ron McArthur receiving the Award for Serivce and Achievement

Ron McArthur – Award for Service and Achievement

Huge congratulations to Ron McArthur, who has been awarded the 75th Anniversary Award for Service and Achievement at the 2016 Scottish Indoor Bowling Awards. This very special and well-deserved award is in recognition of the enormous impact Ron has had on the sport of bowls and for service and achievement.

Ron said: “Thanks to all at the SIBA for awarding me the 75th Anniversary Award for Service and Caricature of Ron McArthurAchievement. It means so much to me, because it was given by the people who matter to me. It was given for what I love to do with a passion. I am very fortunate to work with people I love, get supported by people I love and do it for people I love. What more could I want. Thank you.”

If you would like to love bowls as much as Ron, get in touch at or 07788 878470.

Group Table at the Scottish Indoor Bowling Awards
Group Table at the Scottish Indoor Bowling Awards


Caricature of Maria Spencer

Scottish Indoor Bowling Awards Night

Two of the three nominated bowlers for the Scottish Para Bowler of the year award at the recent Scottish Indoor Bowling Awards Night were from Fife and the Abbeyview club in Dunfermline. Fife bowlers Barbara McMillan and Maria Spencer lined up alongside Garry Brown from Blantyre Miners Welfare for the prestigious award.

2015 Visually Impaired World Champion Maria Spencer lifted the award and became the first person to be celebrated at the Annual Awards in this new category. Maria is a double world champion. She won the B3 singles title in New Zealand last year and four years earlier in South Africa.

Fittingly Maria received her award on the night in the company of her coach and director Sarah Jane Ewing from Dunfermline. Maria has had a challenging time recently with illness and surgery and the award has lifted her spirits enormously.

Richard Brickley MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

Lothian Badminton Festival

Lothian Schools Disability Badminton Festival

Wednesday 28th September 2016, Meadowmill Sports Centre, East Lothian

The official Lothian Disability Sport Schools Calendar of Events kicked off for 2016 / 2017 with the annual Badminton Participatory Festival, welcoming 48 young people from across the region.  The event provided an opportunity for individuals to develop their badminton skills through a series of skill stations, each focusing on specific areas of the sport.  The afternoon session of the event saw all participating school pupils play half court friendly matches against their peers from their own school and others from neighbouring schools, promoting the social interaction aspect of the event as well as the physical activity focus.  With nine schools entering in total, there were young people with physical sensory and learning impairments in attendance from both primary and secondary

The festival introduced many of the participants to the sport for the first time but also adapted activities to challenge players who had accessed the event previously, proving a smash hit with many of the young people and staff alike, with one teacher commenting “it was the best event yet.  I had some reluctant pupils who all blossomed and enjoyed the day”.  It’s a great introduction to the sport and allows the school pupils an opportunity to experience this in a fun and friendly environment.

As in previous years, the event was organised and delivered collaboratively by Lothian Disability Sport, East Lothian’s Badminton development officer Christine Black and Lothian Disability Badminton Club who provided players to support with delivery on the day.  The day also benefits significant from students from Edinburgh College who support and work closely with the young people throughout.

If you would like to find out more about badminton opportunities in the Lothian region, please get in touch with Neal Herbert on 0131 475 2374 or

Boccia balls

Boccia Players Borders Bound

The Scottish Borders will host its 2nd National Open Boccia Competition on Saturday 1st October.

66 players from across the country, including the Borders, will descend upon the Queens Leisure Centre in Galashiels for the event which is part of the Scottish Disability Sport’s Boccia series,

The Competition will feature three sections: players with a physical disability, players with a learning disability and players who use assisted devices.


All players with a learning disability must register by 9.30am

All other players must register by 10.30am

Matches will commence:

10:10am for players with a learning disability.

11:00am for players with a physical disability and assisted devices

It will be constant action throughout the day with over 100 matches being played, no doubt over the day we’ll observe some intense, competitive and exciting games. This event wouldn’t be possible through the support from The Hayward Sanderson Trust, Scottish Borders Disability Sports Group and Borders Boccia Club.

If you require further information prior to the competition or wish to volunteer please don’t hesitate to get in touch with Alan Oliver on or 01896 661 166.