Two of Cornwall’s best-known sporting names have taken up new ambassador positions to lead on the creation and delivery of community, charity and health and wellbeing benefits for the Stadium for Cornwall.
Joining the partners behind the project – Truro and Penwith College, the Cornish Pirates and Truro City FC – former England test cricketer Jack Richards and Olympic medallist rower Annie Vernon will be working in partnership to engage and consult with community groups, organisations and charities from across Cornwall.
As well as leading on the delivery of community and health and wellbeing benefits, both Richards and Vernon will be spearheading the launch of an extensive programme of events, touring across Cornwall throughout the spring to meet community, local council and charity groups.
Vernon, who won a silver medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, and now works as a sports writer and journalist, has a particular interest in the health and wellbeing, participation and aspirational potential of the stadium.
She will be helping the stadium partners in the delivery of health and wellbeing benefits of the stadium, with a particular focus on charity involvement, including elderly and dementia support.
She said: “Cornwall deserves a stadium to provide a focus for sport at all levels, from participation and school sport to high performance and elite. The stadium will be a project for everyone in the Duchy to benefit from and be proud of.
“It will provide for all ages and all backgrounds to further health, fitness and wellbeing; we can equip our young people better for the future and equally care for our elderly by specific provision focussed on the older age group. I am proud to play a part in the campaign to build a Stadium for Cornwall and make this vision a reality.”
Penzance-born and raised Jack Richards, who as wicket keeper and batsman played in eight tests for England, won the ashes in Australia in 1986/7 and played in more than 20 One Day Internationals, is joining the stadium board to ensure the stadium delivers as many benefits as possible to communities from across Cornwall.
He has a keen interest in community involvement and in ensuring as many sports as possible benefit from the Stadium for Cornwall development.
He said: “We need to promote sport and leisure in Cornwall and let the stadium be the heart of that, feeding and serving all areas of the Duchy. The multi-functional stadium must, and will, give unique community benefits from a diverse range of sporting, recreational and socio-economic activities.
“I know that Cornwall loves success and I’m certain that the stadium will help breed that success at all levels. I am looking forward to meeting many community groups and stakeholders across Cornwall in the coming weeks and for the opportunity to help share the vision of health, top-level sport, family entertainment and fun, for ‘one and all,’ to be kept it in Cornwall.”
Speaking on behalf of the stadium partners, Truro and Penwith College director, Martin Tucker, said: “We are delighted that two of Cornwall’s best-known sporting personalities have joined the Stadium for Cornwall team to ensure the stadium delivers as many benefits as possible for our diverse range of communities, sporting and non-sporting, across Cornwall.
“The stadium partners are committed to the vision that the stadium will be a catalyst to boost community sport and charity fundraising across the whole of the Duchy through greater participation across all age groups and in improving Cornwall’s health and wellbeing agenda.
“Both Annie and Jack are well placed to help us deliver on this vision and we are looking forward to working alongside them and seeing these benefits realised during such an exciting time in delivering the Stadium for Cornwall.”
The stadium ambassadors have already started a series of engagement events across Cornwall and will be attending local community network meetings to give members of the public an opportunity to find out more about the Stadium project.
For more information on these events, follow the Stadium for Cornwall Facebook page at www.facebook.com/StadiumforCornwall