Christmas Extravaganza at Downtown Grantham a Success with the Support of inspire+ Sports Leaders Downtown Department Store and Garden Centre Grantham welcomed over 30,000 customers during the weekend of their magical Christmas Extravaganza. The event was a strong success for Lincolnshire’s premier independent retailer.

As a key sponsor of Grantham-based Sports Charity, inspire+, Downtown were delighted to offer their Sports Leaders volunteering opportunities throughout the weekend. With over 70 volunteers, the ambassadors were provided with various opportunities to expand their skills; from assisting customers with choosing their Christmas trees to demonstrating the toys on the Toy Department. Whilst enjoying their eagerness and willingness to help, customers were keen to express their thanks and compliments to the team at inspire+.

inspire+ serve schools in South Kesteven and wider Lincolnshire with over 200 trained Sports Leaders. These young leaders will be supporting numerous events throughout 2019, allowing them the chance to enhance their experiences, which will inevitably provide them valuable skills for their futures. Oldrids & Downtown and inspire+ will be working closely together to deliver projects covering various initiatives and objectives to invest in opportunities for the Sports Leadership Academy.

Marc Blackman, Leadership Manager at inspire+ said: "It is fantastic to have Oldrids & Downtown as sponsors for our Sports Leadership Academy this year as each year we train over 100 young people, who are enthusiastic to give back to their schools and the community. What better way to do this by teaming up with one of the largest names in Lincolnshire. Oldrids & Downtown believe in the work that we have been doing with our local young people and the benefit that our initiative has had and continues to have within the local community. We see that this partnership will enable our young people to have an opportunity to gain further invaluable experience which will help them in the future.”

Richard Broadhead, Managing Director at Oldrids & Downtown said: "We have been delighted to work with the team at inspire+ over the course of this year. As sponsors of the Sports Leadership Academy, we are really proud to play a part in supporting the personal development of over 100 local, young people. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank all the inspire+ volunteers who really helped to make our Christmas Extravaganza weekend even more special for our valued customers. They did a great job and their energy, enthusiasm and desire to please our customers was inspiring!

On Thursday 1st November the annual Lincolnshire Sports Awards took place at the Lincolnshire showground. Organised by Active Lincolnshire as a celebration of the sporting achievements across Lincolnshire, the night was attended by 350 people from clubs, businesses and schools. The night honoured the athletes, coaches and volunteers who have made a difference to sport and physical activity over the past year.

Local sports volunteer and inspire+ Senior Young Ambassador, Logan Grieh who attends the Priory Ruskin Academy was nominated as a finalist for Young Volunteer of the Year alongside 2 others very deserve local finalists.

It was with delight that Logan was chosen as this year’s winner and presented his award by Olympic Bronze medallist, swimmer Steve Parry.

Logan has been a volunteer for inspire+ for over 4 years and has put in hundreds of hours volunteering at local clubs, competitions and community events whilst more recently being a key player in the charities Young Ambassador steering group, taking on roles helping to run events such as the Mini Olympics.

On winning the award Logan said, “It was an honour to even be nominated for the Young Sports Volunteer of the Year Award but then, to find out I had been shortlisted to the top three was fantastic. I was absolutely thrilled when they announced I was the winner, if not a little surprised! I absolutely love my role as Gold Ambassador within the inspire+ organisation and enjoy all my volunteer work during all the different sporting events. The best part of being a volunteer is to see the kids enjoying themselves, making sports fun with a little competitiveness thrown in! As a volunteer my main aim is simple, if the kids have left a well organised event with a smile on their face and have been inspired to try a new sport or continue with one they are passionate about, then I have done my job. Thank you to all at inspire+ for allowing me to be part of their organisation.”

inspire+ is extremely proud that one of its young volunteers has been recognised by the county for their hard work and dedication. Logan is one of over 350 Young Ambassadors and Sports Leaders who volunteer and receive training through inspire+ to benefit the lives of young people through sport. inspire+ Operations Manager, Chris Graves said “We are delighted for Logan to win this award. He thoroughly deserves it for the hours are volunteering he has given in the local schools and community. Logan is a credit to inspire+ and we are very proud to have seen his development from joining the Sports Leadership Academy in year 9.”

Over 1000 primary school pupils in Lincolnshire will be given the essential life skill of learning to ride a bike thanks to an exciting new partnership.

TTC Cycling, the UK’s largest provider of cycling training, has joined forces with sports charity inspire+ to supply 10 x 14” balance bikes and 10 helmets to 24 schools in the area – the largest contract it has ever won in the East Midlands.

All training material required to deliver the UK-accredited ‘Balancability’ learn-to-cycle programme will also be provided so they can deliver the courses for years to come. Colsterworth Primary School, Long Bennington Primary Academy, Barrowby Primary School and The Bluecoat Primary School were amongst the first schools to receive their new bikes and will immediately get to work teaching Reception and Key Stage 1 pupils how to ride.

Samantha Wright, of TTC Cycling, explained: “We work with over 1500 schools across the country, with a lot of those relationships direct with the individual school. This contract represents a potential new way of working with education, as we have used inspire+ contacts and reach to come up with a 24-strong school package, involving more than 240 bikes.”

She continued: “The challenge here was assembling so many bikes in such a short space of time so we have been very busy over the last three weeks putting them together to meet the delivery date of late September.

“More than 1000 young pupils will learn to cycle this year, but that’s just the start. These bikes will then be passed down to ‘new starters’ so they can learn this really important life skill.”

inspire+ is a unique sports charity who serve schools across South Kesteven and Lincolnshire.Colsterworth Primary Receiving their Balance Bikes

Founded by Vincent Brittain in 2011, it aims to improve the lives of young people through sport and healthy active lifestyles, working with primary schools to provide a comprehensive package of support that includes teacher training, pupil leadership development, The Legacy Challenge and pupil mentoring.

The service to secondary schools focuses on providing leadership training and opportunities for students who want to gain experience, skills and knowledge of sports coaching and volunteering or staging sporting events.

“I had the aim of offering our member schools the opportunity to give reception/Key Stage 1 pupils the chance to learn to cycle on balance bikes having seen the difference it made to my son. This was in my mind when I attended the Lincolnshire PE Conference and this is where I first came across TTC Cycling,” added Vincent.

“We discussed the opportunity and then TTC came back with a bespoke offer of support that meant 24 primary schools could benefit from accessing balance bikes and the course material. They even assembled the cycles to make life even easier for our schools.”

TTC Group acquired Cycling Experience in 2014 ago as part of ambitions to expand its training into new specialist areas.

In the four years that have followed, the company has steadily grown its coverage across the UK, winning contracts to deliver cycle training to the general public, local authorities, other public sector bodies and commercial organisations.

The courses range from cycling promotion events and cycle training programmes, through to delivering National Standard cycle training.

For further information, please visit or follow @ttcgroupuk on twitter.  


More than 40 pupils in Year 10 and above from 5 Grantham schools were given the opportunity to learn key skills, including leadership, communication and applying for jobs at a Business Skills Academy event at the Jubilee Church Life Centre last week.

This year’s conference was opened by InvestSK CEO Steve Bowyer, who Commented that “It was a real privilege to be involved with the inspire+ Business Skills Academy: not only does it demonstrate that there are young people locally who are putting themselves forward in terms of leadership development, but also that they are genuinely keen to explore what their future careers might look like and what skills they will need for that. I was really impressed with the positive attitude of the young people: this is an invaluable quality in anyone that a business is looking to recruit. The event was also testament to the passion of local businesses to drive South Kesteven’s future economic growth. The likes of BGB and Viking Signs are business pioneers nurturing new talent through apprenticeships, and Specsavers and SKDC are demonstrating significant commitment in supporting the development of young people through a range of mechanisms.

James Tupper, Marketing Manager at BGB added “It was great to see the young leaders really engaged throughout the day, especially with learning more about the BGB products we had on show.  It’s always a worthwhile experience, and the young adults really get a good insight into what is needed when going for that first job interview, and more importantly, start thinking about what career path to follow.” 

The attendees came from Priory Ruskin Academy, Walton Girls’ High School, West Grantham Academy St Hugh’s, Kesteven and Grantham Girls’ School and The Kings School Grantham. They were all able to take part in a series of workshops including researching companies for work, interview techniques, CV writing and body language. Following the conference, all the students now have the opportunity to apply for work experience placements at the participating businesses.


The 11th annual inspire+ Mini Olympics took place at the Grantham Athletics Stadium over the 19th, 20th & 21st June. Grantham based sports charity inspire+ run the Mini Olympics as an end of year celebration for its member schools and this year saw the event grow to a 3 day event. This allowed over 2000 young people to be involved in the games, its biggest to date!

The Mini Olympics saw primary schools from across Grantham, Stamford, Market Deeping, Peterborough, Gainsborough, Lincoln & the surrounding areas take part, either bringing teams from years 2, 3 or 4. For most of these children it is their first time taking part in a large sports event, particularly one where they take part in their own opening and closing ceremony along with up to 14 different Olympic and Paralympic sports.

This year the event was themed ‘A Festival of Sport’ celebrating the Winter Olympics, Hockey World Cup, The Commonwealth Games and the Football World Cup. The charities Ambassadors; Sam Ruddock, Jonathan Broom-Edwards, Sarah Outen MBE, Sophie Allen and Ben Smith were a part of the celebrations along with Lincoln City FC player Ellis Chapman.

Supporting the running of the event is a number of local business sponsors to which inspire+ are extremely grateful. The charities Sports Leadership Academy students, Young Ambassador and Apprentices play a key part in the setting up and running of the games, without them it would not be possible.

Operations Manager, Chris Graves said after the event: “The Mini Olympics is such a magical event for everyone involved. We hope that the children who take part will be inspired to perhaps try new sports, become more physically active and lead healthy lifestyles. The Mini Olympics is our one mass event of the year and it is great to see all our schools come together after another hugely successful year for Inspire+. We could not run this event without the support of local businesses and the dedication of our team of staff and volunteers. Thank you!”