Ingfield Manor students’ wheelchair basketball teams beat staff from a local company at the opening of the school’s new outdoor games area on Friday.
The new basketball pitch was paid for entirely by fundraising by CASCO the international aerospace company based in Partridge Green. Eight of their staff met secondary and 16+ students for two fun matches after the formal opening.
The area was opened by Barrie Roberts, CEO of CASCO, with some speeches by students.
Josie,13, after thanking CASCO for their support said: “This new area will mean we can play in all seasons.”
Poppy, 17, added: “We look forward to many enjoyable hours practising our skills. Thank you very much.”
Luke, 14, said: “All pupils will enjoy the pitch, and will improve my skills”.
Lilly, 17, continued: “We are all looking forward to playing basketball on the new pitch. Thank you so much for the money, and we look forward to thrashing you later!”
Georgina, 15 said: “Thank you to CASCO”.
In response Barry Roberts said: ”We should remember that the money comes from our annual golf day, and an awful lot of people help and contribute to support Ingfield. So our thanks go to everyone involved.
In rounding off the opening Matthew, 18, said: “Thank you to Barry. It’s great that we can now play sport outside. And today it is sunny! A great start.”
The school’s ‘Head Coach’ Gervaise Thompson then took over and started the two fun matches. The final scores were 6-1 to Ingfield and then a 1-1 draw.
After the final whistle, Gervaise said: “The pitch is brilliant. Both teams did really well, and everyone had such fun; especially the crowd! It is going to be great using the new area all the time.”
Speaking after the match, Linzi Roberts, from CASCO, who had helped organise the day, said: “It’s been such fun, and great for the staff to see the work of Ingfield and take part. We would like to have an annual cup, and meet on the pitch every year!”
The ‘MUGA’ (multi-use games area) is a full specification area for basketball, five-a-side etc and full high robust fencing. The cost was £50,000; met entirely from the CASCO fundraising. The school before had no games or hard play area.
Report contributed by Alan Setchell,, school manager. Pictures by Derek Martin.