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Excitement Builds for New Moorways Sports Village Opening

May 2022

Olympian and former Team GB athlete Perri Shakes-Drayton will join top sports stars for grand opening of Moorways Sports Village

Olympian Perri Shakes-Drayton

Excitement is building for the upcoming opening of the state-of-the-art Moorways Sports Village in Derby. To be run by award-winning operator Everyone Active in partnership with Derby City Council, the new leisure complex is based on a £42 million site.

Shakes-Drayton – the second-fastest Briton of all time in the women’s 400m hurdles – is set to join the line-up of top sports stars attending the grand opening on Saturday, May 21. She also excelled on the flat, winning 4x400m silver at the 2017 World Championships in London and taking gold in the individual 400m at the 2013 European Indoor Championships.

Shakes-Drayton will link up with swimming legend Mark Foster, who competed at five Olympic Games, and former Team GB star Ross Davenport, a double Commonwealth Games gold medallist.

Derby heptathlete Niamh Emerson, who won bronze at the 2018 Commonwealth Games, is also part of the line-up, as is football freestyler and two-times Guinness World Record holder Jamie Knight, Derby County FC Women’s player Sarah Jackson and manager Sam Griffiths.

Paralympic star Kadeena Cox has withdrawn from the event following an opportunity to compete in the Birmingham Diamond League on Saturday, May 21, to prove her form and fitness ahead of key events this summer.

At the opening day of Moorways Sports Village, a wide variety of free and paid-for activities will be laid on for the local community from 10am, including group exercise classes, soft play, martial arts taster sessions, football skills sessions and face painting, with the celebrities joining in all the fun.

The public can book in for selected activities, including the hotly-anticipated water park, here. The water park includes two four-storey flumes, the only wave-creating Wow ball in a UK public pool, the first wave rider in England, a racer slide and a fun water play area for families.

Moorways will be formally opened with a ribbon-cutting ceremony outside the main entrance at 9.15am.

This will be followed by a question-and-answer session with the athletes in Studio Three – which the public can book their places at now – which will include opportunities to secure selfies and autographs.

Each of the VIPs will then head to different parts of the centre to take part in the activity programme. Mark Foster and Ross Davenport will be routed to the swimming pools and water park, while Perri Shakes-Drayton will lead gym challenges. Niamh Emerson will head to Moorways Stadium where a junior athletics meeting is taking place, and Jamie Knight will host children’s football skills sessions, supported by Sarah Jackson and Sam Griffiths.

Athletes will finish their morning by heading to the fitness suite in a bid to top the gym challenge leaderboards.

Simon Morgan, Everyone Active’s contract manager, said: “In Perri, we have an enormously successful athlete who fits perfectly into our line-up of sporting stars and we are delighted to welcome her on board.

“We understand why Kadeena has chosen to prioritise her competition schedule and we wish her all the very best in Birmingham and for the whole season. We are so excited to open the doors to Moorways Sports Village and believe the huge programme of activities and celebrity involvement will prove the ideal way to celebrate with the whole community. We want to show as many people as possible the superb facility on their doorstep, which has something for everyone, no matter what your age, interests or ability.”

Councillor Chris Poulter, Leader of Derby City Council, said: “We are so pleased that these fantastic new facilities will be available for the people of Derby and beyond from Saturday, May 21.

“The leisure venues in our city are some of the best in the country and will contribute to improvements in health, social and economic outcomes in Derby for many decades to come.

“Perri and the other athletes supporting the opening will be an inspiration for all of us. We wish Kadeena the best of luck as she sets her sights on the Commonwealth Games.”

For more information on the open day, click here

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