BBS Swimming Gala 2019!

BBS National Youth Swimming Gala 30 March 2019


Originally posted on  by 

British Blind Sport is pleased to confirm the 2019 date for the charity’s National Youth Swimming Gala as Saturday 30th March. The prestigious event will take place in the West Midlands at the University of Birmingham’s Sport & Fitness Centre, Edgbaston (B15 2TT) from 12:30 pm to 5:00 pm and is free to enter for all blind and partially sighted children aged between 8 to 17 years old.

Hosted by the national charity for visually impaired people in sport, this event has been held successfully for over 20 years and is the only VI specific youth swimming competition in the UK, attracting participants from across the country. It is the perfect event for any child with a visual impairment to take part in swimming or compete against children their own age. Free, one to one and small group lessons will also be on offer for those children aged 5-17 years of age, who may not feel confident enough to take part in the swimming gala but would like to learn the basic principles of how to swim. These lessons we be delivered by qualified coaches with experience of working with people with visual impairments.

Alaina MacGregor, CEO of British Blind Sport said:

“Every year we see how the gala makes a real difference to young people living with sight loss, many of whom have never had the opportunity to participate in a sporting event that is adapted to suit their needs or been able to compete alongside their peers. The event also helps young people, families and volunteers to learn more about British Blind Sport and the many projects that we deliver to support young VI people in sport.  It also provides a unique experience for our See My Voice Young Leaders who volunteer to help run the event. Year on year, we receive really positive feedback from the participants and young volunteers at the event and I am pleased that it remains a mainstay within the BBS calendar. ”

British Blind Sport Participation Delivery Officer, Alex Pitts said,

“Sport is a tool that can be used to inspire people of all backgrounds. The BBS National Youth Swimming Gala holds extreme significance, as it provides the opportunity to integrate and socialise with others who have had similar life experiences, as well as developing swimming proficiency.  The event also offers signposting to local clubs so that participants can train and compete year round. We love to see the difference just one event can make to young people’s lives”.

For further details please visit the British Blind Sport website or to register please click here. If you wish to sign up a group of swimmers, please contact Alex Pitts on 07929 356428 or email

British Blind Sport need volunteers to help at upcoming events. If you can spare some time to help the visually impaired and blind attendees enjoy the day fully, please get in touch.

Download the BBS National Youth Swimming Gala 2019 poster here

Download the BBS National Youth Swimming Gala Accessible Poster 2019 here



Podcast on Blind Sailing Week!

Blind Sailing Week-RNIB Connect Radio

Blind Sailing Week

RNIB Connect Radio’s Allan Russell, who himself has attended the sailing week in the past, spoke to organiser Grant Morris to get more information.

Even if you’ve never sailed before, or an old salt looking to get back on the water, Blind Sailing Week is back, and they have places available.

The summer event sees blind and partially sighted people sailing with sighted crew on a flotilla of yachts, around the south coast of England and the fun packed week is now taking bookings.

You can listen to the RNIB Sailing Week For VI People  Audio Podcast below

Link to blind Sailing week event:


Goalball UK – Schools Programme!

Goalball UK Schools Programme

Goalball UK Schools Programme, Supported by BBC Children in Need!

Goalball is:

  • A Paralympic sport, since nineteen-seventy-six
  • Inclusive
  • A unique sport

Why goalball?

  • Exciting unique sport.
  • Broadens the experience of sport for all pupils.
  • Pupils who are blind or partially sighted (V.I.) can play sport with their sighted peers.
  • Increases awareness of pupils who are V.I.
  • Improves communication and teamwork.
  • Most importantly, it gets pupils active! 

What is goalball?

  • Goalball is an exciting sport designed specifically for players who are V.I.
  • Goalball is inclusive as all players wear eyeshades, meaning anybody can play regardless of level of sight.
  • Goalball uses a unique ball which has audible bells embedded inside, this allows players to track and defend the ball using their hearing.
  • The court is marked using tactile markings, usually string and tape. At a school level gymnastic mats can be used instead.

What can Goalball UK offer your school?

We can offer your school a bespoke package suited to your needs, with your choice of the following:

  • Goalball UK School Leaders course for your staff and/or pupils.
  • Goalball UK school equipment package, including teaching resources.
  • Team-teach sessions working with experienced Goalball UK coaches.
  • Extra-curricular activities supported by an experienced Goalball UK coach.

Every school can add the following to any package, for free!

  • Great Britain goalball athlete visit.
  • Entry into the school’s local goalball competition.

We also offer taster sessions for your school to try out the sport.

Benefits of goalball in schools

  • Only nine percent of the population with a visual impairment participate in thirty minutes of physical activity per week, compared with thirty-nine percent of the overall population.

How can goalball address this?

  • Unique and exciting way to increase activity levels.
  • Holistic activity to improve lifestyles.
  • Enables visually impaired pupils to play on a level field
  • Ignites your other senses.

Goalball is an inclusive sport, meaning anybody can play!

If you are interested in getting an exciting sport into your school, then get in touch:

Stephen Newey, Goalball UK National Schools Officer

Address: English Institute of Sport, Coleridge Road, Sheffield, S9 5DA

Mobile: 0771 952 0528

Telephone: 0114 223 5670




Blind Sailing Week 7 – 13 July

Blind Sailing Week: 7 - 13 July
Royal Lymington Yacht Club, 19 Bath Rd, Lymington SO41 3SE
01225  336205
07th July 2019
fee this year will remain at £250.

Blind Sailing Week: 7 – 13 July 2019

(Hosted by The Royal Lymington Yacht Club, organised through Sporting Activities for the Disabled Charitable Trust)

Planning for this year’s South Coast ‘Blind Week’ is now underway and there are some important changes to announce. We are delighted to say that Mike Browne has again kindly agreed to facilitate this event through his charity, without his support we simply would not be able to offer you a week of sailing.

The changes.

First, there is a change of club to host this year’s event. Last year the Royal Southampton YC had to close its clubhouse in Ocean Village so new arrangements have been put in place with the Royal Lymington Yacht Club to host Blind Week 2019. Further details on getting to and from Lymington and other arrangements will be sent out in April with joining instructions should we be able to offer you a place.

The week starts on Sunday 7 July finishing on the following Saturday, 13 July 2019

Second, we have had to make a slight adjustment to the dates that were announced in Falmouth last year to fit in with the club’s diary. This year we will start the week a day later, on Sunday 7 July finishing on the following Saturday, 13th. The regular format for the week will remain unchanged in all other respects, it is just that the event will be a day shorter than normal. Following our usual routine, we will start the week with dinner at the club on Sunday evening returning for the end of week dinner on Friday 12 July.

Finally, while Will is away with family commitments, certainly for the early part of the New Year, Grant is going to return to take on the lead of managing the event. Both Will & Grant will work together on Will’s return to the UK leading up to the event itself.

If you are visually impaired and would like to apply for a place for the week please contact Grant (details below) by the end of March at the latest.  If you have already sent an e-mail expressing an interest could you please reply to Grant otherwise there is a danger that you will accidentally miss out.

And don’t forget that sailing experience is not necessary as beginners are most welcome. So, if you know of any visually impaired adult who may not be aware about Blind Week, but would like to come along, or any friend who doesn’t appear to have received this letter, please ask them to contact Grant (they must be over 18).

I am thinking of sending a Fleet to cruise further afield this year as we did some years ago, most likely to France and the Channel Islands. Perhaps you would let me know if joining such a Fleet would be of interest?  I cannot promise if this will go ahead as it all depends on boat availability and numbers interested, not to mention the weather of course!  At this stage, it is impossible to confirm places until we know the availability of boats, so do bear with us until April when we will know more.

It is important, especially if this is your first ‘Blind Week’, that you understand that the yachts we use are not specially equipped to cater for any specific disabilities. Hence you will need a moderate level of agility to allow you to take a full and active part on board during the week. In applying for a place on the week we assume that you meet both the age and agility criteria.

We have managed our best to contain the ever-increasing costs of Blind Week and the fee this year will remain at £250.

This letter was generated from our database of people who have shown an interest in Blind Week but, under new data protection legislation, please advise if you wish your name to be removed from the list.

If you would like to take part in Blind Week 2019 please contact Grant: By email:  or by telephone:  01225  336205 (Home) 07740  930528 (Mobile)

More information will be out in April and, in the meantime, we look forward to hearing from you.


Tennis Volunteers needed!

Tennis Volunteers need for the 17 Feb - Call Linda on 0775 894136

Tennis Volunteers needed for the Metro Tennis Tournament – 17 Feb!

Linda Almond our amazing award winning  volunteering co-ordinator needs even more volunteers to help at the Metro Tennis Tournament on the 17 Feb 2019,  and here is your chance to join Linda’s great team of volunteers!

So if you’re interested in trying out volunteering and helping with Blind and VI tennis in the Islington area, this is a great way to start.

Contact: Email: or Call 07775 894136


About Linda Almond

Linda Almond is a dedicated volunteer for Metro Blind Sport and has been supporting people with sight loss to access and enjoy weekly tennis sessions since 2011. Linda first discovered her love of tennis 20 years ago when she started playing for a local team. One day, she attended the Blind Tennis Championships in Roehampton where she met Roy Smith, Director of Metro Blind Sport, and happened to say “if you are ever in Islington and need a hand” which is where Linda’s volunteering journey began.

Read the full article below

Meet Linda – Volunteer Coordinator!