South Tyneside gymnasts flying high thanks to generosity of Chloe and Liam Together Forever Trust
Lauren Conlin, 18, Hannah Smith, 12, both from South Shields, and 15-year-old Olivia Parker, from Hebburn, have been named as part of the Great British team for the Acrobatic Gymnastic European Championships held in Israel this October.
The trio, who attend South Tyneside Gymnastics Club, received the news following their success at the British Championships in Liverpool, which took place in July.
Senior coach Ian Said was also selected as the Great Britain team manager and since then the club has been fundraising to pay for the likes of travel costs and expenses while competing abroad.
And now they have received a generous donation from the charity set up in memory of Chloe Rutherford and Liam Curry who were killed in the Manchester Arena bomb attack in May 2017.
The charity helps young people to follow their dreams in sports and performance.
Chloe’s mum Lisa Rutherford said: “It is fantastic what they are doing and they have achieved a lot already.
“So we are really pleased to be able to support the gymnasts by helping them make up the shortfall in fundraising to enable them to go.
“We wish them all the best of luck.”
The club’s 11-16 trio Chloe Heley, 15, Ruby Oliver, 11, from South Shields, and Megan Neal, 13, from Sunderland, were also announced as the non-travelling first reserve for the Acrobatic European Age Group competition.
The girls all competed in the British Championships, along with women’s pair Lillie Gladman, 12 and Morgan Nelson, 15 both from Sunderland.
The two trios took the silver medals in their category, while the women’s pair were awarded the bronze.
On the donation, Ian commented: “It is absolutely fantastic and we just couldn’t believe it.
“For these parents to be going through what they are going through and to be doing something like this, it is just inspirational.
“It’s amazing, they have just gone above and beyond.”