St Albans school granted funding for basketball court

948 Sports Foundation vice chairman and trustee Sandy Bell (left) presents a cheque for £1000 to Tow

948 Sports Foundation vice chairman and trustee Sandy Bell (left) presents a cheque for £1000 to Townsend School years 7-11 pupils and head of PE Caroline Pennifold (right) to help pay towards basketball hoops in the playground. Picture: DANNY LOO - Credit: Picture: DANNY LOO

A sports foundation has made a donation to help a school fund equipment for new basketball courts.

The 948 Sports Foundation donated £1,000to Townsend School in High Oaks, St Albans, to fund basketball hoops for the pupils to play.

The Foundation said they recognised Townsend pupils previously only had a small indoor gym, which had to cover all sports from volleyball to gymnastics. The school’s pupils had been playing for local clubs, including teams at Oaklands College and one representing England, but despite the high achievers in sport and the huge amount of interest in basketball, the school did not have the necessary facilities for an outdoor, heavy-duty fixed basketball area.

Caroline Pennifold, head of PE at Townsend, said: “The 948 Sports Foundation is a charity which has come out of the Old Albanians Rugby Club, and each year you can apply for a grant for some money from them.

“They have funding for local athletes and to enrich young people’s sports throughout St Albans.

“Lots of pupils love basketball but we do not have enough facilities so I applied for some money for outdoor basketball hoops so the children can play at break times and lunch times.

“This helps with the physical development of pupils which is a very important element of school development.

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Sandy Bell, who is secretary, treasurer and vice president of the 948 Sports Foundation, presented Caroline with the cheque.

She said: “It is a pleasure to meet with the recipients of our grants and Townsend School will no doubt excel in this area in future basketball competitions.”

Since the Foundation started in 2001, it has given more than £270,000 to clubs, schools and individuals in more than 370 different grants, with the aim of helping young people in St Albans and the surrounding area improve their participation in sport and help them achieve excellence.

Caroline added: “I think it’s brilliant. I have known other individuals and other schools that have had funds from them and it’s fantastic to help where we don’t have enough money ourselves to be able to fund for big things, and I know it helps our sports coaches as well.”