Let's hope Olympics inspires locals to take up new sport

BEST QUALITY AVAILABLE Handout photo taken with permission from the Instagram account @madewithloveb

Diving gold medallist Tom Daley wearing an Olympic-themed cardigan he knitted while sitting in the stands at the Olympics in Tokyo. - Credit: PA

It was great to see Team GB hit a solid vein of gold, silver and bronze in Tokyo, coming fourth in the medals table, with only sporting superpowers the USA and China, along with hosts Japan, ahead of them.

From Tom Daley getting a long-awaited gold medal in diving, to 13-year-old Sky Brown bagging a bronze medal in skateboarding and cyclist Jason Kenny becoming the most decorated British Olympian in history winning his seventh gold medal, it was great to see Team GB winning against the world’s elite.

The flow of medals in Tokyo, following success in Rio five years ago, is a stark contrast to Atlanta 1996 where Team GB won only one gold medal.

Yet while the mid-1990s saw the low point in medals, it also marks the root of our current success.

The launch of the National Lottery back in 1994 provided resources to invest in grassroots sports facilities.

These resources were combined with initiatives to identify and nature future talent to go from first picking up a sport to competing on the international stage. 

Events like modern pentathlon might not be ones which get much attention in the media outside of the Olympics, but the path to Olympic success is one which starts many years before.

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Behind every medal will be a story of perseverance, hard work, focus and how, if they had listened to a negative voice, they would never have made it. 

Let’s hope there are some here in our Bay who feel inspired by this year’s successes to take up a new sport or activity, starting them on the path to winning a medal at the Olympic Games of Brisbane 2032.

Results 

This week students across our Bay received their A-level and GCSE results. 

After a rollercoaster year disrupted by lockdowns and self-isolation, it would have been impossible to run examinations effectively and fairly.

No alternative method would be perfect but using teacher assessments was the best option in the circumstances. 

The pandemic has not only affected how education is delivered, but choices students are making about their future, with a 20 per cent increase in applications for places at UK medical schools compared to last year.

If you received results this week, I hope they were what you were needed, if not there are many other options available, including many local businesses looking for talented staff who can work their way up the career ladder to be the senior managers of the future.

Ultimately, just like many of the medal winners at the Olympics, those who succeed are not the ones who are always lucky, but those who keep going despite a setback or when things don’t turn out as hoped.  

Surgery times 

I have restarted face-to-face advice surgeries, but telephone appointments can still be arranged if preferred.

Sadly, my surgeries must remain by appointment only at this stage. 

Surgeries are for urgent personal matters, such as welfare, immigration, housing, problems accessing support and benefits. 

For an appointment you can either email me at kevin@kevinjfoster.com or leave a message on 01803 214989. You can also drop into my office at 5-7 East Street, Torquay TQ2 5SD between 10am and 1pm weekdays.

Please note you may have to wait outside if others attend at the same time.