Amber Valley athletes receive ICON funding to help make sports dreams come true

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Some of the most promising sports performers in the Amber Valley Borough have been handed a share of £5,175 in grants from business network ICON to help them chase their dreams.

The chosen 27 athletes have been selected to receive a grant of up to £250 each, which they can use to help meet costs such as travel, equipment, coaching fees or competition costs.

All of the athletes are tipped for further success in their respective sports, and are either already competing for England or Great Britain or are part of recognised national development squads or club academy structures.

Amongst the athletes to benefit are Greg (18) Townley, from Belper, is a member of Derby City Gymnastics Club and has won a bronze medal in the senior men’s team event of the World Tumbling Championships, along with an individual silver in the equivalent event at European level as part of the British Gymnastics National Tumbling Squad.

Jethro McGraw (17), from Belper, runs for Amber Valley and Erewash AC in the 800m and 1,500m and has claimed a bronze medal at the English Indoor Athletics Championships and a silver at the Northern Indoor Championships, both in the 800m.

Coun Tony Holmes, Amber Valley Borough Council’s portfolio holder for Housing and Public Health, said: “More athletes on the ICON programme this year have come from Amber Valley than any other area of the county, which underlines just how much top-class sporting talent we have right on our doorstep.

“We’ve all taken great delight in the great success of our sporting stars at the London 2012 Olympics and the 2014 Commonwealth Games, including medal success for former ICON recipients such as Adam Peaty and Liam Pitchford, and it’s important that we support legacies from those events in our communities.”

Amber Valley Borough Council is among 10 local authorities across the county who are members of business network ICON, which was set up by Derbyshire Sport as part of the work to create a lasting legacy from the London 2012 Olympics in Derbyshire.

Each ICON member, which also includes Amber Valley School Sport Partnership, contributes an annual membership fee, and this money goes directly to athletes through the bursary scheme.