This year the Club broke with a tradition of over 20 years. In previous years we have taken teams to Netball Weekends at Brean Sands in June and July. We always enjoyed the netball, but the accommodation has become progressively worse over the years, so this year we decided to try an alternative.
We took a Year 8 team and a Year 9 team to Condover Hall in Shropshire for a weekend of netball and other activities. Helping our Head Coach Dianne with the weekend were Rhiannon, who had organised the whole thing for us, and coaches Jean and Emma. Condover Hall is an Elizabethan Stately Home, now run as a residential adventure centre by JCA. The weekend was well organised by the Condover staff and the Netball Providers led by Joanne Coker, who is an International Umpire. The accommodation and food were very good.
Saturday morning was free for activities. The girls took part in archery, an aerial assualt course, climbing wall and a zip wire. There were other activities indoors, but the weather was fine and warm, so most of the time we were outside enjoying the sunshine.
Year 8 Team
Year 9 team
Both our teams won every match on the Saturday, so they both qualified for the Cup Competitions on Sunday. On Sunday our Year 8s again won every single match, including the Final, beating Northwich by 5 goals to 3. Our Year 9 team won or drew all their matches except the Final, which they lost to Northwich NC by 3 goals to 10.
Most of the teams participating this weekend were teams from private schools. Northwich was the only other Junior Netball Club, many of whose players play also for County or elite teams such as Oldham. All in all our girls have good reason to be proud of themselves.
Year 8 Winners
Year 9 Runners Up
The worst part of the weekend was the return journey where we had to contend with an M54 closure and the Velo Race which blocked many routes back into Birmingam.
The Year 8 'Cup'
Birmingham City Condover Group Photo
with Coaches (l-r) Emma, Jean, Rhiannon and Dianne
Thanks go to Rhiannon for organising the event for us, to Dianne, Jean and Emma for managing the teams, and to Dianne and Jonathan who drove the minibuses.
Have you ever wondered what happens to the kit we no longer use? We had boxes and boxes of old kit, some of it going back to the the early days of the club and a lot of it brand new.
Then we heard of an initiative where a coach called Miriam Sawyer was arranging to take old and unwanted netball kit out to Uganda so that kids there could get some use out of it. So we contacted her and packed up four or five cardboard boxes full of skirts, tops, bibs and other no longer used kit. These were collected by a friend of a friend who happened to work in Bournville, and from there they made their way to Uganda where the kit was given to netball players there.
These girls are wearing ex-Birmingham City shirts and patch bibs. Some of you may recognise them. The shirts, not the girls! And that is Miriam in the centre, who has done a wonderful job that has benefited both ourselves and the girls in Uganda.
(Dianne's name was spelled correctly on the video display.)
As usual, our Club went to the netball weekend at Brean Sands Holday Camp, staying in the one-star (that's being generous) accommodation provided. But the weather was perfect, the food was good (so the Chef says) and everyone enjoyed themselves. We even have some photos to prove it.
These are the Year 7 and 8 teams with Coaches Jean, Dianne and Emma - and Umpires Andy, Sarah and Carla. Both teams went through to the Plate Competition on the second day. The Year 7s came third in their section. The year 8s came second and went through to the knockout rounds, where they lost in the Quarter-Final.
We took the Year 9 and year 10 teams the following weekend. The weathercontinued to be good; the accommodation was a little cleaner than it had been last week, but of no better standard. That did not matter because nearly everyone had a good time. Both teams qualified for the Plate Competitions on the Sunday. The year 10s got through to the knockout rounds, but lost in the Quarter-Final.
These are the players we took, with Head Coach Dianne, Coach Adrian and chief cook and bottle washer Jonathan. Somehow our Umpires Andy and Carla avoided being on the photo, but we are grateful to them anyway.
Congratulations to the England Netball Team winning Gold in the Commonwealth Games on 15th April 2018! A little known fact: the very first Netball Club that England Captain Ama Agbeze played for was ...
BIrmingham City Netball Club!
She came to us from junior school netball, and from the start it was clear that she was destined for great things. She soon moved on, because sadly at that time we could not provide her with what she needed.