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Successful Netball League Drives Up Number of Girls Taking Part in Sport

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The Swansea Bay Netball League organised by Neath Port Talbot Council’s Physical Activity and Sport Service (PASS) is growing rapidly – achieving the goal of attracting more girls into sport and healthier lifestyles.

The league is quickly attracting new teams and players.

It has grown from having just one venue and a handful of teams initially to its current structure which involves five venues across Neath Port Talbot, Swansea and Bridgend with 59 teams competing in nine different leagues.

Under-11 festivals are organised to give new netballers the first chance to play against other teams in a non-competitive environment and earlier this month on February 8th, around 200 girls took part in an Under-11 festival in Neath Port Talbot.

Research has confirmed a wide disparity in sport involvement generally between girls and boys with girls dropping out of sport by the age of 14 at a much higher rate than boys.

Neath Port Talbot Council’s Cabinet Member for Education, Skills and Culture, Cllr Peter Rees, said

“There is growing evidence that sport plays a key role in shaping attitudes to fitness and healthy lifestyles so the Council’s PASS service should be congratulated in developing the Swansea Bay Netball League which is now playing a major part in getting more and more girls involved in sport, not only here, but across Swansea Bay.

“The families of these girls will inevitably get involved in supporting them so the active lifestyles we are promoting will spread.”

The league has a Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/nptnetballleague/).

It contains information about clubs, league standings and fixtures and for anyone interested in taking up netball please see the page for information on clubs with training venues and times.

Mark Napieralla AYP (Active Young People) Co-ordinator and organiser of the Swansea Bay netball league said “It is great to see so many girls playing competitively and to see the sport is growing so quickly in our area.

“There is a real buzz around league nights (Fridays) and the standard of netball being played is getting better all the time. The commitment from the coaches, parents and volunteers involved is invaluable and I would like to thank all who contribute to the league and its growing success.”

The Physical Activity & Sport Service is committed to developing and promoting a better life for people living in Neath Port Talbot through “active living” – enjoying sports, walking, running and other physical activities which raise levels of health and well-being.

PASS supports a wide range of different projects and initiatives and works in close partnership with the Sports Council and governing bodies of many sports and voluntary sector clubs.