Next generation of talented athletes to be supported by Everyone Active's Sporting Champions scheme

Press Release

Published on 17 May 2023
Archived on 17 June 2023

Up-and-coming athletes in Stratford-on-Avon District are set to gain much-needed support as part of a sports talent development programme.

Everyone Active's Sporting Champions scheme, now heading into its seventh year, has helped thousands of athletes to achieve their sporting potential by providing free access to Everyone Active's 200+ leisure facilities, including Stratford, Southam, Shipston, Studley and The Grieg Leisure Centres.

Among the athletes accepted on the scheme in Stratford District this year are:

  • Isabella Balzaretti from Newbold-on-Stour, a waterpolo player and part of the U17 GB national squad.
  • Paula Williams from Stratford-upon-Avon. Paula is an athlete, currently number one in the UK for shot putt, sprint hurdles and javelin for her age group.
  • Charles Squires from Stratford-upon-Avon, a rugby player selected to progress to the senior section of the Ultimate Rugby Sevens National academy.

Alongside free access to Everyone Active centres, Sporting Champions will also have the chance to receive valuable mentoring and guidance from an impressive panel of Elite athletes.

The scheme's all-star line-up of decorated Olympians and Paralympians includes Jennifer and Jessica Gadirova, Lutalo Muhammad, Richard Kilty, Lauren Steadman, Kadeena Cox and Maisie Summers-Newton.

Throughout the year, these Elite athletes will share their experience and expertise through group mentoring sessions, covering topics including mental wellbeing, nutrition, managing finances, social media and media training.

Olympic silver medallist Colin Jackson will also continue to support the scheme through his role as an Ambassador, working alongside the Elite athletes to make sport more accessible within local communities.

Tokyo 2020 paratriathlon champion and cross-country skier Lauren Steadman said: "I'm super proud to be an Elite athlete for this year's Sporting Champions scheme, helping to mentor, guide and inspire up-and-coming athletes in their sporting careers.

"The fact there is now a brand creating opportunities and supporting younger athletes to achieve their full potential is amazing. I hope I can share my knowledge and experience with the Sporting Champions through our mentoring days and that together we can create an incredible future generation of athletes."

Alex Fuoco-Lang, Everyone Active's contract manager, said: "Everyone Active's Sporting Champions scheme has been very successful in providing exceptional support to emerging talent and we are delighted to be once again supporting athletes from Stratford on their journey to success.

"It's fantastic to see how the scheme has expanded over the years, now providing more than 1,000 athletes nationwide with access to top-quality training facilities and support.

"As a leisure provider working in partnership with Stratford-on-Avon District Council we feel it is important to cater for all sections of the community. We hope to continue making a real difference to our athletes' success and are excited to see what the relaunch of the scheme will bring this year."

To find out more about the Everyone Active's Sporting Champions scheme, visit or follow @easportingchamps on Instagram. For further information on Everyone Active, visit

Contact details

Stratford-on-Avon District Council
Elizabeth House, Church Street,
Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire,
CV37 6HX
Tel: 01789 267575

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Last updated on 17/05/2023