Olympic sprinter supports thousands of school children at Eaton Park fun run
- Credit: Archant Norfolk
Thousands of primary schoolchildren donned their running shoes as part of a fun run event held at Eaton Park.
More than 2,000 took part in the INEOS Go Run for Fun event yesterday, cheered on by many supporters, one of which was an Olympic sprinter.
James Ellington, the 2014 European 4x100m relay champion was at the event in an ambassadorial role as a friendly face of encouragement and also led the children in a mass warm-up.
Mr Ellington said: 'This is my first time to Norwich and it is great to see so many children enjoying their sprinting.
'When I started at the age of 14 there was not anything like this going on, and it only started with my mother taking me down to my local athletics club.
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'I am sure all the children taking part will have a fun day running with their friends and hopefully encourage them to lead a more active and healthy lifestyle.
'I've enjoying cheering on the runners, and you never know there might be a potential athlete of the future out there.'
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The GO Run for Fun series is the idea of Jim Ratcliffe, owner of UK Manufacturing company INEOS, who announced a £1.5m donation to establish a new charitable foundation to encourage children to run for fun.
The campaign has organised more than 160 events to date and has many more planned throughout the UK and Europe.
To date it has encouraged more than 75,000 children to take part in its 1-2km fun runs, making it one of the biggest children's running initiatives in the world.
Mr Ratcliffe said: 'I'm passionate about getting as many children running as possible as early as possible. The idea is simple – to get children out of the house having fun.
'Running is the basis of so many great sports. If our children can catch the running bug early, they're more likely to stick to it, and this can only lead to them having more active and healthier lifestyles in the future.'
As part of the programme 6,000 children including 100 total from Bluebell Primary and Avenue Junior Schools' in Norwich will visit the Olympic Stadium in London next week.
For more information and to enter your child for INEOS GO Run For Fun events happening near you, visit: www.gorunforfun.com.