Paralympian Dame Sarah Storey praises those behind SportsAid lunch for helping young Suffolk athletes

Dame Sarah Storey at Bury St Edmunds SportsAid Lunch Club. Suffolk Golf and Spa Hotel, Fornham St Ge

Dame Sarah Storey at Bury St Edmunds SportsAid Lunch Club. Suffolk Golf and Spa Hotel, Fornham St Genevieve. - Credit: Gregg Brown

Six-times Paralympian, Dame Sarah Storey, has hailed the efforts of the businesses behind a sporting lunch club in Bury St Edmunds as “invaluable” in helping the development of talented athletes from Suffolk.

Dame Sarah, Great Britain’s most decorated female Paralympian of all time, made the comments at a SportsAid lunch at the Suffolk Golf and Spa Hotel at Fornham St Genevieve on Friday.

She said: “I’d like to pay tribute to Abbeycroft Leisure, Insurance Risk Solutions and Lovewell Blake for their invaluable efforts in raising money to support talented young sportsmen and women from Suffolk.”

The three businesses, along with Sicon, established the Bury St Edmunds SportsAid Lunch Club in 2013 to raise money for SportsAid, a charity dedicated to supporting the next generation of Olympians, Paralympians and international sportsmen and women from Suffolk.

The club hosts two lunches a year for local business people, each with an international athlete as guest speaker.

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Dame Sarah, who has won 22 Paralympic medals including 11 gold, added: “It is incredibly expensive to train and compete at national and international level. SportsAid research shows that a young athlete will spend on average £6,000 per year on training and competing at international level.

“I know from personal experience that SportsAid does an incredible job providing much needed financial support when these young people need it most, in the defining early years of their careers.”

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Cyclist and former swimmer Dame Sarah, who has recently returned from participating in the Tour of California, also took the opportunity to present grants to three young aspiring athletes from Suffolk – Ruth Hole, Callum Wilkinson and Tom McGregor.

Ruth, 15, from Bury, participates in equestrian and is ranked second in Great Britain in her age group.

Callum, 17, from Newmarket, is a race walker and is a member of the GB squad. In the under-18 5,000m, he is World and European ranked two and British ranked one. Tom, 15, is a shooter from Denham, near Bury, and is ranked four in Great Britain at under-16 level and was runner-up at the 2014 British Open.

The Bury St Edmunds SportsAid Lunch Club will host its next lunch on Friday, October 16.

Businesses interested in getting involved should contact Adam Baker on 07894 598296 or email

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