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Community Games Relay heads to Cumbria

June 15, 2013

Active Cumbria are celebrating the one-year anniversary of the torch arriving in Cumbria by supporting the Community Games Relay, which mirrors the Olympic Torch Relay route - virtually travelling to regions across the country for 70 days. With the spotlight shining on Cumbria today.

Active Cumbria have nominated a special Community Games volunteer, Matthew Kirkby who helped bring this legacy programme to life in Carlisle, who will be honoured for his role in helping to organize Carlisle’s Newfield Estate’s Community Gala.

Community Games is an Olympic and Paralympic Games legacy programme funded by the Social Action Fund and delivered by the County Sports Partnership Network. In Cumbria this is through Active Cumbria, the County Sport and Physical Activity Partnership. The programme has so far supported 34 events during 2013 giving out more than £4,000 in grants to help community events thrive post 2012 and to continue the Olympic spirit. More than 750 volunteers make these events happen and reach over 10,230 participants.

Residents from Carlisle’s Newfield estate were recently given the chance to re-live the Olympic Torch Relay celebrations one year on at their Community Gala, which was supported and funded through the Community Games programme.

Matthew has received a commemorative jersey and has been invited to a special VIP day in London to take part in the official opening of Olympic venue The Copper Box (which played host to handball during the Games), with a ceremony taking place at Queen Elizabeth Park on July 27 mirroring the day that the torch officially arrived at Olympic Park in 2012.

Matthew will join 69 other volunteers from across the country at this special event and represent the 36,000 volunteers who helped to make Community Games Events a success in 2012.

Richard Johnston, Senior Manager at Active Cumbria said:

“We are delighted Community Games will shine a spotlight on Matthew and his work with Newfield and Pinecroft Residents Association on creating a great community event. As the Community Games Relay re-traces the steps of the Olympic and Paralympic torch relay route we thought the Newfield’s Community Gala really captured what the programme wants to achieve.

Last year Community Games helped bring friends, families and communities together in celebration of London 2012, in a way like no other.

People often ask me if the Olympic and Paralympic Games has created a legacy in Cumbria and I believe through programmes like Community Games it undoubtedly has.

We hope more people will support Community Games events in Cumbria this year. I would urge any event organizers to get I touch with Active Cumbria or to look at our website for more information on how to apply for support from the Community Games programme for you event.”

Lee Mason, Chief Executive of the County Sports Partnership Network, said:

“The County Sports Partnership Network is really looking forward to the Community Games Relay.

It is a great opportunity for people inspired by the Olympic and Paralympic Games to come together to enjoy sport and cultural activities on the day the Community Games Relay passes through their area or at any of the thousands of Community Games events taking place this year.

People involved in Community Games work tirelessly throughout the year to ensure others enjoy sporting and cultural activities in the spirit of the Olympic and Paralympic Games, through the programme.”

Minister for civil society Nick Hurd said:

"The 2012 Games showed people what is possible when they come together and get involved.

A strong country is built on solid communities, which is why we have awarded Community games support through the Social Action Fund, helping more people improve where they live and discover what a rewarding experience volunteering is."

If you would like to organise a Community Games or to find out when your next event is taking place, log on to If you would like to find out how Community Games programme can support your event in Cumbria go to

Community Games logo

In 2013 Community Games has supported 34 events in Cumbria with funding grantds totalling £4,000, which used 750 volunteers and reached 10,230 participants.

If you would like to know how the Community Games can support your local event visit our pages