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Lothian Disability Sport News

News & Updates from Lothian Disability Sport

39 Swimmers Represent Lothian at National Junior Swim Championships

39 Swimmers Represent Lothian at National Junior Swim Championships

The success of the Lothian Schools swim qualifier provided the platform for 39 swimmers from the region to test themselves against their peers from across the country.

The Scottish Disability Sport National Junior Championships for swimmers with a physical disability or sensory impairment were held at Grangemouth Sports Complex on Wednesday 4th November and 9 swimmers were selected to represent Lothian – many experiencing this competition for the very first time.  Sam Downie, Luke Mary (Lothian Racers), Kate Bolan, Beth Norris (Livingston & District Dolphins – Rainbow Squad) and Samantha Gough (Loanhead Swim Team) were all newbies to the event and their weekly club sessions are obviously benefiting their stroke technique and confidence in the water.  Additionally, the continued development of brother’s Jamie and Kris Fleming (Lothian Racers) and Aaron and Corey McDowell (Livingston & District Dolphins – Rainbow Squad) is testament to the hard work that club coaches continue to offer and reinforcing the strong network of clubs across the region.  

It was a day of mixed success for the Lothian swimmers with some superb swimming and personal best times secured.  Special mention to Armadale Primary School pupil Kate Bolan who swan excellently through the day posting times of 1.00.80s (50m Back) and 57.72s (50m Free) to secure two personal bests.  Full results can be found by clicking here.

Tollcorss International Swim Centre in Glasgow played host to the Scottish Disability Sport National Junior Championships for swimmers with a learning disability on Wednesday 18th November.  Lothian were able to enter a 30 person strong team with many of the swimmers selected from schools such as Cedarbank (West Lothian), Saltersgate (Midlothian) and Woodlands (Edinburgh).  Again, amongst the team were many club swimmers who managed to put their hard work in training into practice and test themselves against young people of similar ability from across the country.  Livingston & District Dolphins – Rainbow Squad (Patrick Gamble, George Forbes, Alex McGuigan, Dylan Hurst), Lothian Racers (Emma Stewart, Keira McLeod, John Findlay, Lauren Queripel, Dylan and Sarah Bleakley), Lothian Waves (Ben Ibikunle) and Mercat Greats (Lucas Harthill, Cameron Burns and Taylor Baillie) were all extremely well represented in terms of attendance and performance on the day as many swimmers posted significant PB’s and secured a host of medals to take home.  Mainstream club swimmers Christian Buchanan (East Lothian Swim Team), Callum Todd (Fauldhouse Penguins) and Shannon Crosbie (Swim West Lothian).

Performances of note came from Saltersgate’s Lauren Queripel and Dylan Hurst of Meldrum PS (West Lothian) who swam well and secured two medals each.  Full results will be available here soon.

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Schools Swim Qualifier Attracts Large Entry

Schools Swim Qualifier Attracts Large Entry

Lothian Schools Disability Swim Qualifier 2015

Tuesday 6th October 2015 – Dalkeith School Campus

The Lothian Schools Swim Qualifier attracted a record number of entries from a record number of schools – with 81 swimmers participating from a very encouraging 20 schools.  The swim gala acts as a qualifying event for the Scottish Disability Sport Championships for swimmers with a physical disability or sensory impairment (4th November) and also swimmers with a learning disability (18th November).  Times are recorded from the Regional event and a Lothian squad is then selected to represent the region at the National event, giving swimmers the opportunity to test themselves against individuals from other areas of the country.

Dalkeith Schools Campus provided the venue for the event and accommodated the gala superbly throughout the day and also during the lead up to the event, allowing all swimmers an enjoyable experience throughout.  Further Midlothian support was provided from the region’s Active Schools Team and senior pupils from both Dalkeith and St David’s HS, as Sarah Wright and the large group of young volunteers were on hand to guide swimmers over the course of the day.  Additional support from local officials enables the gala to run, without their experience, enthusiasm and significant contribution we would not be able to provide this opportunity for the young people.

Swimmers were well represented from all four local authorities with many mainstream schools engaging with the event which is very encouraging as we continue to strive to provide sporting opportunities for young people with a disability.  Swimmers attending for the first time are given chance to improve training times, gain confidence and build relationships with their peers while experienced swimmers are looking to qualify for the National Championships, renew rivalries with other swimmers and continue their development in the pool.  All swimmers are there to have an enjoyable experience and through this are keen to access further swimming opportunities across the region.

If you are looking for further information on swimming opportunities in the area, please get in touch on 0131 475 2364 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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Lothian Schools Disability Badminton Festival

Lothian Schools Disability Badminton Festival

Once again, Meadowmill sports centre welcomed a number of young people from across the Lothian region for the annual Schools Disability Badminton Festival held on Wednesday 30th September.

The event provides school aged young people the opportunity to try badminton, introducing them to the sport in a fun and engaging way.  Around 40 young people enjoyed the half day event, which was again delivered by Lothian Disability Badminton Club (LDBC) coaches and volunteers, as the club continue to strongly support the events within the LDS calendar of events.  Players from the club, Ross Foley and Colin Leslie led various aspects of the session before providing the young participants with an excellent demonstration of Para Badminton as the two played a small match – displaying the skills they recently showcased at the World Para Badminton Championships in England, where they proudly represented Scotland.

Christine Black, East Lothian Badminton Development Officer, took the overall lead on the session as schools from Edinburgh (Kaimes, Pilrig Park and Towerbank PS) and West Lothian (Cedarbank) travelled to the region and enjoyed a fun packed morning of Badminton with some showing real potential as players for the future.

If you are interested in disability badminton, please contact (LDBC) Head Coach Lyndon Williams on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 07846 275132.

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Lothian Schools Triumph at Toryglen

Lothian Schools Triumph at Toryglen

Scottish Disability Sport  7-a-side Championships

Lothian Schools put in an impressive performance at the SDS National Championships on Wednesday 16th - claiming victory in the Junior Band B Division after defeating Carrongrange of Forth Valley 3-2 in a closely contested final.

The Lothian team comprised of players who performed well throughout the previous school year, with the winners (West Calder) and runners up (Woodlands) of the School League making up the squad of 8 players.  The Lothian youngsters recorded a hard fought 0-0 draw in their first group match (Carrongrange) before recording impressive victories against Letham A (6-0) and Claremont Colts (9-0) to proceed as group winners, leading to another match with 4th place finishers in the group - Claremont Colts.  Again the Lothian side were too strong for the East Kilbride youngsters and booked their place in the final. 

The final saw Declan Murray (Woodlands) put his side in front from the penalty spot before Carrongrange levelled the scores at 1-1.  Lothian then took the lead for a second time with a goal from West Cader's Callum Race before Murray put through his own net to level the scores once more and setting up a tense finish to the match.  The match was settled by an excellent finish from Steven Meek (West Calder) and Lothian were crowned Band B Champions.  The Lothian squad of players can be found below -

Mike Eusepi (Woodlands)

Declan Murray (Woodlands)

Matthew Power (Woodlands)

Ben Thompson (Woodlands)

Dan Fletcher (West Calder)

Steven Meek (West Calder)

Callum Race (West Calder)

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SFA School League Fixture 3 - Albyn Park, West Lothian.

SFA School League Fixture 3 - Albyn Park, West Lothian.

The third league fixture of the season was hosted by Broxburn United at Albyn Park, West Lothian and the sun shone throughout for the three teams in attendance.  Unfortunately, Cedarbank were unable to attend the fixture due to staffing issues which left three teams to battle it out for top spot of the league - particularly between West Calder HS and Woodlands.

Pilrig Park/Drummond were unfortunate to continue their losing run and they should be pleased with their performance over the two fixtures with both Woodlands and West Calder taking well into the last third of the match before finally breaking them down and wining 3-0 and 5-0 respectively.  The race for the title is firmly between West Calder and Woodlands, and this fixture was no different with the two teams battling out a hard fought 1-1 draw.  West Calder dominating the possession throughout and equalising near the death after falling behind to an early Woodlands goal.

The last fixture of the season is scheduled for Friday 15th May at Albyn Park, West Lothian - 1.30pm kick off.  Please feel free to come and support the boys on the final match day of the school year.

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Scottish FA School League - Fixture 2

Scottish FA School League  - Fixture 2

SFA School League Fixture 2 - Dalkeith School Campus, Midlothian

Friday 20th March 2015

The second fixture in this season's Scottish FA School League for players with a learning disability was played at Dalkeith School Campus on Friday 20th March.  The league, which encourages players from S3 and upwards to represent their school in four fixtures throughout the 'season' and gives the  young people the opportunity to travel to each local authority and play against their peers from different areas of Edinburgh and Lothians.  The winners and runners up of the league will then be invited to the SDS/SFA National event, where they will compete against other top teams from across the country

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Lothian Schools 5-a-side Football Festival & Competition

Lothian Schools 5-a-side Football Festival & Competition

Lothian Schools 5-a-side Football Festival and Competition

Thursday 5th March 2015

The annual Lothian 5-a-side festival for secondary aged pupils with a learning disability saw a change of venue from previous years, as Portobello Powerleague played host for the first time.  The last minute change of venue was embraced by all nine schools entered, with representation from all four local authorities which is again very pleasing.

The format of the event remained the same, with six skill stations delivered in the morning session allowing the young people to perfect their passing, dribbling and shooting techniques before putting this into practice after lunch.  These sessions were delivered by coaches and volunteers from Street Soccer and the SFA, proving a huge hit with the majority of the young people in attendance on the day.  The close partnership working and hard work of Street Soccer and the SFA is crucial to these events, providing the platform for the school pupils to enhance their skills and participate against their peers from across the region.

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SDS Sportshall Athletics

SDS Sportshall Athletics

Scottish Disability National Sportshall Athletics Festival

For the 9th year running Scottish Disability Sport in partnership with Scottish Athletics, Sports Development and Active Schools hosted the National Sportshall Athletics Competition at Grangemouth Community Centre on the 4March.  The competition welcomes young people from both primary and secondary schools with a physical/learning disability or sensory impairment.  A total number of 90 pupils (10 teams) took part in a range of scoring indoor athletics events such as the javelin throw, standing long jump, speed bounce, target throw, chest push and high stepper.

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Regional Sportshall Athletics Festival 2015

Regional Sportshall Athletics Festival 2015

Lothian Sportshall Athletics Festival 2015

West Lothian College - Thursday 6th February

Once again West Lothian College played host to the annual Regional Sportshall Athletics Festival, which saw over 140 young people from across five local authorities register to participate.  Following on from last year, pupils from the Borders travelled north to participate and compliment the numbers from the four local authorities.

The festival welcomes young people with a physical/learning disability or sensory impairment and encourages children from  both primary and secondary schools to come along and try a range of indoor athletics events, such as the javelin throw, standing long jump and shuttle runs and therefore introducing them to the sport.  The event also acts as a Regional Qualifier for the Scottish Disability Sport National Event on the 4th March, where a selected team of young people will be given the opportunity to represent Lothian against their peers from across Scotland. 

Due to the number of young people who continue to attend this event, the day was split into two sessions - morning and afternoon.  The event was again supported by students from West Lothian College, who undertake Disability Inclusion Training and an Adapted Sportshall Athletics Worhshop in the lead up to the event.  The input from the students is invaluable and this is clearly demonstrated through the positive engagement and interaction with the young people throughout the day.  Thanks is extended to Alex McEwan, Athletics Development Officer for WL and Shona Malcolm, Disability Development Officer for Scottish Athletics who continue to provide significant support before and during the event.  Also Kelly Keogh, Active Schools Co-ordinator in WL, who helped engage ten schools from the area.

The event is a staple in the School Calendar of Events and the engagement from the young people is again very positive, especially in the West Lothian area.  Hopefully this introduction to the sport will encourage the young people across the Region to explore further opportunities in athletics and sport on the whole. 

If you are interested in getting involved with sport in the Lothian region or would like more information on local events, please contact Neal on 0131 475 2364 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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Paralympic Experience Event

Paralympic Experience Event

The Edinburgh Paralympic Experience Event is back and it promises to be better than ever!  The annual event which will take place at Forrester / St Augustine’s High School in Edinburgh on Friday 13 March 2015 will see the young people with a physical or sensory disability descend on the capital for a day of sport delivered by some of the best coaches and clubs in the country.

Making its debut will be the sport of swimming and all attendees will be encouraged to take part, regardless of swimming ability.  All levels will be catered for and each attendee will have the opportunity to access the sport further.  Swimming is one of the leading para sports for people with a disability and there is an extensive and established pathway available within the East of Scotland.  The other sports confirmed for the day include athletics, badminton, judo, table tennis and wheelchair basketball.  These sports have been selected due to the strong club links locally, so that young people can continue to enjoy and develop within the sports for many years to come.

There will also be a high performance para athletes’ panel, allowing for an engaging question and answer session and  we will see the return of the ‘How to Identify and Include Children and Young People with a Disability in Sport’ workshop, delivered by Richard Brickley MBE.  

As in previous years there will be an opportunity for parents to attend on the day, talk to the experts and meet the clubs and this has proven extremely successful in raising the awareness and sharing ideas to enable continued participation.  Parental feedback from the 2014 event include…..

“First time experience and it was far more than we expected.  Coaches, experts, helpers were all superb.  Definitely recommend this event.”

“Contact details for future participation in sports were invaluable.  Range of activities was great and gives children a chance to participate in an environment in which they feel comfortable.”

“The quality of coaching and staff are excellent and all children regardless of ability were given huge encouragement, making it a very enjoyable day.”

“Overall Lee and I have had a great day and think these events are very impressive, they meet all needs of every child and the confidence it gives the kids is amazing.”

The event invites all primary and secondary pupils with a physical or sensory disability from the five local authority areas within the region, including, City of Edinburgh, East Lothian, Midlothian, West Lothian and the Scottish Borders.

For more information please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., SDS Regional Development Manager, on 0131 625 4412.
 

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LDS Schools Boccia Festival a Great Success

LDS Schools Boccia Festival a Great Success

The first event of 2015 on the school calendar of events was held at the Jack Kane Centre on Tuesday 13th January - the Lothian Disability Sport Boccia Festival.  The event brought more than 80 young people from across the region to the East of Edinburgh to participate in fun skill sessions during the morning, before progressing on to a slightly more competitive element in the afternoon.

Edinburgh Leisure have taken real ownership of this event over the past couple of years and it's great to see such a large team plan, co-ordinate and deliver the festival, which again proved a great success.  Heather Williams, Community Inclusion Officer with Edinburgh Leisure again took the lead on the event and has formed some excellent partnerships across the city, with the Edinburgh University Ladies Hockey providing support to the young people and Boccia coaches alike.  Edinburgh Active Schools were also present on the day, in addition to encouraging a large school entry from the city, with Kaimes, Oaklands, Braidburn, Pilrig Park, Prospect Bank, St Crispins, and Woodlands  all participating on the day.  East Lothian were another region well represented with Musselburgh Grammar, Preston Lodge HS and  Ross High all enjoying the day.

Patrick Wilson provided the young people with a display of top class Boccia, demonstrating skills that have seen the BC3 player progress rapidly through the sports pathway.  Patrick, who has cerebral palsy, competed in his first SDS Championship as recently as 2011 and is now travelling the world representing Great Britain, competing in Beijing, China in September last year.

To view some photo's from the event, click here.  All photo's supplied by Tinged Memories Professional Photography.

If you would like more information on Boccia and how to get involved or would like to discuss other opportunities in disability sport, please contact Neal at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 0131 475 2364.

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Lothian Schools Kick Off this Year's Football Participatory Event

Lothian Schools Kick Off this Year's Football Participatory Event

Football Participatory Event - Lothian School Calendar of Events

Wednesday 26th November 2014 - Heriott Watt University, Edinburgh

Heriott Watt University Astrodome welcomed a host of young people from Schools across the region to kick off this year's Lothian Football Participatory Event on Wednesday 26th November.

Young People travelled from all four local authorities to continue the impressive attendance over the previous few years, with coaches from the Scottish FA and Street Soccer leading and delivering six skill stations in passing, shooting, dribbling and control.  This was followed up by small sided games with the primary aged teams from Prospect Bank and Kames (both Edinburgh) experiencing the event for the first time, while the slightly more experienced and older pupils from Woodlands (Edinburgh), Musselburgh Grammar (East Lothian) and Cedarbank (West Lothian) battled it out in the Secondary category.  There was also representation from Drummond CHS (Edinburgh) and Saltersgate (Midlothian), taking the number of young people to over 90.

Thanks is extended to the coaches from the SFA and Street Soccer and also Heriott Watt University for providing an ideal venue for the young people to develop their skills.  Links with the Heriott Watt Sports Union were also established, as they provided volunteers to assist with the event and this is an area the organisers will look to strengthen for next year.  Special thank you to Scott Montgomery, Active Schools Co-ordinator for Midlothian, for organising the event.

Hope to see you all next year and thanks again for your continued support.

For more photo's from this event can be found in the gallery.

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LDS News

This section will include all the latest news and updates on disability sport across the Lothian region - information on Regional and National events can be found in the Event Section of the website.

If you have exciting news you would like to share regarding disability sport in the Lothians, please get in touch on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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