CHILDREN from across the region enjoyed a bumper sports event yesterday.

To celebrate the fact more than 3,000 children across the county have tried out sporting sessions this summer holiday, Sport Flintshire launched the first ever Dragon Sports Summer Festival.

Dragon Sport, a Sport Wales initiative funded by the National Lottery, and delivered locally by Sport Flintshire, has served up sporting activities throughout the school summer holidays ranging from traditional sports such as football and tennis to wheeled sports such as roller blading and skateboarding.

The menu of sports, also including cheerleading and water polo, was taken up by seven to 13-year-olds all summer long at Mold, Buckley, Holywell, Flint and Connah’s Quay Leisure Centres.

Yesterday’s sports festival, which took place at Mold Leisure Centre, rewarded 70 children from all corners of the county who attended the most sport sessions to participate in their favourite activities at the festival.

Steve Thomas, Dragon Sports coordinator, said the summer programme of activities was set up to offer “fun, safe and inclusive sporting opportunities” and to “involve children who lack such opportunities outside of school”.

He said: “The programme has had a dramatic impact on sports participation in Flintshire this summer by encouraging over 3,000 children to become involved in a variety of organised sporting activities.

“It has helped broaden the children’s sporting interests by introducing them to coaching, skill development and appropriate competition while remaining committed to developing fair play principles.”

Sport Wales regional manager Graham Williams said Dragon Sport is already being delivered at 95 per cent of primary schools in North Wales, including all 68 in Flintshire, during term time.

“It’s great to see Sport Flintshire extending the programme into school holidays to keep youngsters in Flintshire active over the summer months,” he said.

“The popularity of the summer scheme speaks volumes, with not just hundreds but thousands of youngsters taking part.

“These are exactly the sort of opportunities that we want to see replicated across North Wales, and the rest of the country, to achieve our shared ambition of getting every child hooked on sport for life.”