On Wednesday 2nd October, a balmy, sunny, autumn day, the Defence Academy of the United Kingdom hosted their inaugural Sports and Wellbeing Day.
Over 1000 competitors and participants took part from the Defence Academy and other lodger units across Shrivenham Station. All three Services were represented as well as a large proportion of the extensive Civil Service and civilian workforce, who so ably support and contribute to Academy life and form part of the wider Shrivenham family.
Events undertaken were wide ranging and covered all of the classic sports of rugby, football, hockey, running, tennis and cycling but also included some less well known or represented sports such as orienteering, fencing, clay-pigeon shooting, yoga, pilates and weightlifting. Additionally, there were guided meditation and mindfulness sessions and information stands on health, nutrition and positive behaviour supported by the Medical and Dental Centre as well as, the Diversity and Inclusion team.
The afternoon concluded with a chaotic race for the children, an extensive prize giving ceremony and a free families BBQ with music. It was seen by all who attended as a great success. The Commandant, Major General Andrew Roe said:
“I’m so pleased that so many people made time to put sport and wellbeing first. The team running the event delivered an exceptional range of activities, a wonderful mix of gladiatorial sport and “have-a-go” sessions introducing people to new opportunities. I’m also really grateful to the whole team who made this possible. Station HQ, the Athletic Union and in particular Majors Jamie Metcalfe-Tarren, Victoria Deakin and Tim Carpenter. I must also thank again our partners, Serco and ESS, for their superb support and both Officers’ Messes for their financial sponsorship. I very much look forward to this being a regular fixture in the calendar!”
The Station Commander, Wing Commander Rob Hart added:
“An absolutely fantastic day which really delivered on all that we set out to achieve. We were able to draw the whole site workforce together for an afternoon of healthy competition and fun and more seriously, we were able to reinforce the benefits of physical and mental wellbeing to defence. The team are already looking forward to next year when we hope to build on this year’s success. We have some great ideas and plan to incorporate suggestions from the fantastic feedback we have already received.”