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May 9, 2012
More than 600 athletes from around the world will be coming to the North West in the run up to the London 2012 Olympic Games to complete their final training.
Sir Charles Allen CBE, Chair of LOCOG's Nations and Regions group, came to the region today, Wednesday, to visit one of our 25 Paralympic and Olympic Pre Games Training Camp venues.
He spent time at Manchester Metropolitan University's Cheshire campus, which will play host to three Oceania teams. Athletes from the Solomon Islands, Kiribati and Vanuatu are all being welcomed to MMU Cheshire's main sports facility, which opened in 2011.
The new beach volleyball court at the campus has been developed specially for the Vanuatu team, providing a first class court that will leave a local legacy in terms of developing beach volleyball in the local area.
Sir Charles said: "It is fantastic to see the North West welcoming athletes from 22 different nations and every continent in the world to prepare for London 2012.
"Pre Games Training Camps are an important way of engaging communities around the UK in the Games and I am delighted today to be able to see first hand the quality of provision and legacy programmes that MMU Cheshire and Cheshire East are putting on for athletes from Oceania."
Andy Worthington, Chair of the Northwest Steering Group for the 2012 Games said: 'It is a great testament to the quality of facilities that the region is able to host so many teams in the build up to London 2012. Since hosting our first Training Camps in 2009 we have seen how they can lever economic, sporting and social benefits. All these athletes can be sure of a warm welcome in the region ahead of the Games.'
Other Olympic squads training in the North West include the Australian swimming and table tennis teams, the USA's basketball and boxing teams and teams from the 15 Pacific Islands in Oceania.
There will be 17 Brazilian Paralympic teams training in the region, as well as athletes representing Namibia, Romania and Thailand.
In addition to the overseas teams preparing in the region, the North West is also playing an important role in the preparation of Team GB and Paralympics GB including the GB cycling teams, the taekwondo team and the disability swimming team.
The Pre-Training Camps are based in 25 different venues all over the North West, from Manchester Aquatics Centre and George H Carnall Leisure Centre in Trafford to Kendal Judo Club in Cumbria and Kirkby Sports College in Merseyside.
Pre-Games Training Camps in Cumbria