Community bid hopes to get Chichester families into sport in 2012

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A NEW SCHEME is being launched in Chichester aimed at encouraging families to get their new year off to a sporting start.

The community sports bag scheme allows people to hire out a variety of sports equipment for free – after an initial one-off £2 registration fee.

Set up and funded by the district council, it launched yesterday (Monday, January 16), at the Chichester Nursery School Children and Family Centre.

“We want to encourage families to take part in sports together, and with the Olympics taking place in London this year, there’s never been a better time,” said Cllr Eileen Lintill, district cabinet member for leisure and wellbeing.

“There are so many different types of sport out there, but it can be expensive to buy or rent equipment to try them.

“The scheme operates like a book library – once you have registered you can look through the book and hire out equipment free of charge for a whole day or the whole weekend.

“We think this is a great way to get families to try new activities together.

“As well as equipment for the more popular sports such as football, tennis, rugby, and cricket, there will be an opportunity to hire out play equipment including skipping ropes, pom pom balls and foam frisbees.”

The equipment available also includes rounders bats, netballs, basketballs, toddler play equipment, rainbow cutes, mini play bats and reaction balls.

All pieces of equipment come with guides and ideas for fun games for the whole family.

The scheme is being piloted at Chichester Nursery School Children and Family Centre and Swanfield Community Centre.

If successful it is hoped the scheme will be rolled out across the district later in the year.

For more information on the family centre, log on to www.chichester-nur.w-sussex.sch.uk.