Weymouth & Portland Borough Council and partners will be hosting the 2014 Dorset Festival of Sports to mark the second anniversary of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic sailing events in the borough.

The event takes place from Wednesday 16 July to Sunday 3 August and includes a two day sports arena, two disability sports days, a team sports day, fun day, Battens Charity Volleyball Championship and RAF Beach Volleyball Classic.

Weymouth & Portland Borough Council Tourism & Culture Briefholder Cllr Rachel Rogers said: “Weymouth and Portland had the eyes of the world on the area in 2012. The borough council along with other partners have worked hard to mark the anniversary of a brilliant summer with this year’s Dorset Festival of Sports.

“The programme this year will be a fantastic opportunity for people to have a go at sports or cheer on as a spectator. We want to keep the sporting legacy of the games going.”

Many Dorset based organisations will be taking part in the Dorset Festival of Sport, giving all ages and abilities a chance to be inspired by London 2012. Visitors will be able to try a sport on land or water, inside and out and emulate their Olympic heroes and discover the many health, fitness and social benefits.

Organisations include: Weymouth Swimming Pool (Everyone Active), Dorset County Council and Weymouth & Portland Borough Council.

Dorset County Council Cabinet member for community services, Colin Jamieson, said:
“Dorset County Council has been organising the Disability Sports Festivals for the last seven years. We’re proud that this year’s events will give over 500 Dorset adults and children with disabilities the chance to develop their potential and try a fantastic range of sports and activities. Who knows, it may even launch the career of a future Paralympian.”

Conrad Humphreys, Managing Director of Sport Environment, the company behind the Ecover Blue Mile said: “Last year’s inaugural Weymouth Ecover Blue Mile was a huge success and this year’s is going to be even bigger. We had hundreds of people having a go at our taster sessions in kayaking and stand up paddle-boarding and we’re looking forward to getting families involved again this summer.

“We’ll also be having competitive races which are open to everyone and, for the first time this year, an open water 1-mile swim – the Ecover Blue Mile. And be prepared for some competitive action in the Aquatriathlon and Team Challenge.”

As well as these sporting events, residents and visitors to the beach this summer will be greeted by the welcome return of one of 2012 biggest successes the Ambassadors. They will be on hand during the two day Dorset Beach Sports Festival (26 and 27 July), giving information about what is happening each day and about the area to visitors.

Events happening during the 10 day festival are:

16 July
Dorset Schools Disability Beach Sports Festival

19 and 20 July
Ecover Blue Mile – People can participate in open water swim, kayaking and stand-up paddle boarding.

26 and 27 July
Dorset Beach Sports Festival – A two day festival designed to give all visitors an opportunity to try a sport, water sports and beach sports including table tennis, beach rugby\football and beach volleyball with health advice and promotion. This will be delivered in conjunction with local sports clubs and organisations.

28 July
Dorset Adults Disability Beach Festival

29 July
Youth Football Competition – multiple age groups for boys and girls (supported by Dorset FA)

31 July
Battens Charity Beach Volleyball Event – Over 300 local people take part in this popular charity event raising funds for the local hospice. (supported by Weymouth Volleyball Club and the borough council)

1 to 3 August
RAF Careers Weymouth Beach Volleyball Classic- Britain’s oldest and most successful annual beach volleyball championships. Over 100 top two-a-side men’s and women’s teams take part in Weymouth Beach Volleyball Classic on Weymouth Beach.