Harlaxton youngsters enjoy countryside and cricket
Pupils at a village school spent the day with the Belvoir Cricket and Countryside Trust earlier this month.
As well as showing off their sports skills, the Years 3 and 4 youngsters from Harlaxton Primary School spent the afternoon orienteering at their cricket ground in Knipton and even met the hounds from Belvoir Castle.
The day was arranged by the trust as part of its annual programme of cricket and countryside school days, designed to give pupils the opportunity to take part in outdoor learning away from their own environment.
The sessions include two hours’ sports education and a further two and a half hours of countryside education.
Children get to learn from sports specialists and countryside educationalists, from local people, including a farmer, woodman, gamekeeper, huntsman, gundog handlers, fishing enthusiasts and birds of prey keepers.
Teaching staff are also given skills and knowledge to develop their own PE delivery.
Former professional cricketer and chief executive of the trust, Darren Bicknell, said : “Children don’t get to take part in much sport in school or get out to the countryside.
“We currently work with 34 different schools within a 25 mile radius of Belvoir Castle.
“It gives rural and inner city school children the chance to visit the countryside. Many of them don’t get to see grass on a regular basis.”
Harlaxton class teacher, Lisa Ironmonger, said: “All the children thoroughly enjoyed themselves. They even got to hold the castle’s birds of prey and watch them fly.”
Belvoir Cricket & Countryside Trust, which is celebrating its tenth anniversary this year, was founded by Phil O’Brien, Stephen Henderson and Darren Bicknell, whose aim was to encourage participation in cricket in rural communities and to create access to cricket and the countryside for young people.
Darren added: “We are quite limited by the weather. Therefore we are looking to redevelop the pavilion and build a small sports hall so we can run activities all year.”