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Sports Minister heralds ‘fantastic’ SportPark at Loughborough University

1 March 2010

Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport Ben Bradshaw MP has praised the visionary thinking behind Loughborough University’s SportPark project - the soon-to-be new home of British Swimming and the ASA.

Mr Bradshaw visited the £15million facility on the edge of the University Campus on 25th February 2010. The facility, which will become the new head offices of British Swimming and the ASA in April, is home to a host of national sport bodies, allowing a diverse range of organisations to share best practice and innovations across their different disciplines.

The Minister was taken on a tour of the building by the University's Deputy Vice Chancellor Neil Halliwell and Deputy Director of Sport Tim Garfield, where he met staff from the organisations already based at SportPark, including Great Britain Wheelchair Basketball, Volleyball England, the Youth Sport Trust and Leicestershire & Rutland County Sports Partnership, as well as meeting British Swimming/ASA's Jane Nickerson .

Mr Bradshaw said: "This is about putting not just Loughborough University at the centre of international sport but also at the centre of sport in the UK by bringing together a number of sports governing bodies in one place. It's a fantastic idea and it will hopefully help to make us world beaters."

The visit also included the chance to meet some of SportPark's funding partners including Sport England, the East Midlands Development Agency, Leicestershire County Council and Charnwood Borough Council.

Mr Bradshaw added: "Loughborough has, for a long time, been our leading sports educational institution, producing some of our top sportspeople internationally, but by bringing together some of the country's national sporting bodies in a space where they can exchange information, experiences and work together, it means that the UK's sporting structure is much better integrated and less dispersed.

"I think that will not only help us produce even more sports stars of the future but it will also help us ensure that we continue to work on the improvements we've seen in school sport and sports clubs at local community level.

Tim Garfield said: "The Secretary of State was delighted with what we are trying to achieve through using SportPark as a central hub for some of the country's leading sports organisations. To see his reaction to what we have created here confirms that, with the help of our funding partners, Loughborough University has added another aspect to the work we do in staying at the forefront of sporting excellence in the UK."

−ENDS−

For all media enquiries contact regarding this story:
Danny Coyle
Sport PR Officer
Loughborough University
T: 01509 223491
E: D.Coyle@lboro.ac.uk

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