LETTER: Quality of training at risk for athletes

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I am writing to raise my concerns over the forthcoming changes to the sporting facilities at Broadbridge Heath Leisure Centre.

My daughter, Amy Fitzpatrick, who trains with Horsham Blue Star Harriers, is very disappointed that there will be no indoor training facilities once the new track opens. Broadbridge Heath currently provides indoor facilities, which allows athletes to train throughout the winter months when the outdoor track cannot always be relied upon.

She is very committed to athletics and has achieved success for Horsham over the last few years - being U13 and U15 Sussex Champion for sprint hurdles for the last three years. She also qualified for the English Schools National Championships in Birmingham this year, making the final.

In addition she holds the Sussex record for U13 and U15 sprint hurdles. She is moving up to the Under 17 age category next season and very much wants her training programme to continue as it has over the last few years.

If Horsham District Council do not provide indoor training facilities then the quality of training for all Horsham Blue Star athletes will suffer. Serious consideration should be given to the needs of the athletes that currently use the facilities at Broadbridge Heath. They have all worked hard in their chosen events and it would be very difficult for Horsham athletes to perform at their best if training options were reduced.

The proposal for a Dual Hall facility (as suggested by the Broadbridge Heath Joint User Group) seems the best solution to suit future requirements for the new leisure centre. This would give athletes and other sports groups access to indoor facilities, allowing high standards of training to continue.

HELEN BURTON

Bloor Close, Horsham