Hackney achieves biggest-ever medal haul at London Youth Games

Hackney’s young talent are proving they are amongst the capital's sporting elite after winning a top ten spot in the London Youth Games and taking home their biggest-ever medal haul.The 525 Hackney youngsters, aged between 11 and 17, took seventh place – the borough’s second-highest ever position - in the pan-London Games finals at Crystal Palace National Sports Centre at the weekend.

The borough finished second in the ParaGames Trophy, part of the overall Games, with a first in boys football, and third places for both boys and girls athletics and tennis.

Hackney was represented by 43 teams across 30 sports, accruing a total of 68 team and individual medals. The most ever won by the borough.

There were team medals for girls basketball, tennis, BMX, cycling, girls handball, along with individual medals across disability athletics, kayak slalom, diving, sailing, rowing, judo, disability swimming, indoor rowing, football, adapted indoor rowing, athletics, BMX and cycling.

Cycling Team Manager, Keir Apperley, whose team won gold on Saturday, said: “There was tough opposition. We knew we were up there, but thankfully we won gold. They gave 100 per cent all of them. It was all about team work. We put the work in.”

There were many outstanding team and individual performances throughout the games but the standout achievements came from Noah Williams who won senior diving for the third year; Vawn Humphries who gained a silver in the junior slalom kayak; and all the Hackney para teams, who finished in the top ten across all five sports they competed in.

Noah, 15, said: “It was great fun representing Hackney and I am very proud to have defended the senior boys diving title. Hackney are really supportive of my diving.”

Vawn, also 15, added: “I put my heart and soul into the sport. I didn't really mind what medal I got as long as it was a medal. Hackney hadn’t won a medal in kayak slalom for four years; the last person to get a medal was my sister, taking the bronze in 2011.”

A total of 40 teams finished in the top 20, 25 of which finished in the top 10.

Cllr Jonathan McShane, Cabinet Member for Health, Social Care and Culture, Hackney Council
Hackney’s sporting youngsters have done us proud again. A top ten place and taking home the most number of medals for the borough in the Games’ 34-year history goes to show that we’re producing some of the best sporting talent in the capital.

I know how hard-working and dedicated these young people, as well their coaches and teachers, are, and I want to offer them all a huge congratulations.
Cllr Jonathan McShane, Cabinet Member for Health, Social Care and Culture, Hackney Council

More than 5,000 young people trained towards final selection to represent Hackney. The finals competitors have been competing against the other 32 London boroughs since November.

The Council is already on the lookout for young people for next year’s Games. If you are interested, or wish to know more, please contact the Leisure and Physical Activity team on: 020 8356 2230 or go to the Council web pages