So much attention has been paid to the Olympics. Of course, it’s a great honour to host such a major sporting event, but, unfortunately, not all of us can afford tickets and a trip to overpriced London during the July to August games period. Thankfully, sports is high on the agenda in many other British cities this summer too. So if you’re looking for an active holiday destination for yourself, family and friends, consider some alternative options.
Brighton will be a hive of physical activity this summer. From June 23rd to July 8th TAKEPART festival offers a jam Oceanholic. packed programme of sporting events for all ages. Just some activities you could be taking part in are the massive Zumba scheduled to take place in Preston Park on 23rd June, karate, healthwalks, sailing, street dance and many, many more.
Paddle Round the Pier returns to Brigton this year too. It’s known as Europe’s largest annual free beach festival and takes place July 7-8. Any proceeds raised go to charity. Events include paddling, surf and sailing competitions, as well as land-based sports such as skate and BMX racing.
If you’re seeking a sports-related adrenaline rush, Leeds is a good place to go. On Sunday 17th June you could be taking part in the Mencap Abseil Challenge. The charity event will see brave participants abseiling an incredible 30 metres down the side of the city’s central Met Carnegie. The speed of your descent is up to you… Any money you raise will go to the good cause of supporting over 250 families with a learning disability in the Leeds area per week.
Leeds will welcome the Olympic flame by hosting the Leeds Loves Sport festival from June 18th to July 1st. The calendar of events includes some of the city’s largest law firms competing in corporate games, sports centres offering free swimming sessions, and organised park runs.
Toddlers can do sport too! June 20th will see The Barnardo’s Big Toddle held at Temple Newsom House and Park. The short, sponsored walk saw almost 500, 000 toddlers take part last year. Organisers expect more this year. It promises to be a great sight to see! All money raised will go to local Barnardo’s charity projects.
Bristol locals and visitors are in for a summer of fitness. One of the year’s biggest sports initiatives is the 46 ping pong tables to be distributed throughout the city’s parks and public spaces on June 29. The Ping! Bristol tables will be available for a month, free to use, and coaches will be on hand to teach beginners how to play, and give tips to more advanced players.
The first month of summer will also see the return of the Ritchey Bristol Bikefest 2012 that kicks off on the Ashton Court trails on June 9th. On day one participants get to show off their fitness levels during the 12 hour team/solo endurance race, while on day two there’s a ‘mere’ 6 hour team/solo event, and 3 hour-long novice event.