School seeks champions to back pavilion hope
A PRIMARY school is looking for 100 'community champions' to pledge their support to help build a community sports pavilion on its old field.
Blackhorse Primary School has plans, permission and more than half of the funding to create the new pavilion.
But the school is £50,000 short of its fundraising target and to raise the remaining money, it plans to hold a sponsorship lottery which will give one donor the chance to have the new pavilion named after them.
Head teacher Simon Botten said: "At Blackhorse, we are well known for the extensive opportunities which we offer to children, including in sport.
"Over the past 10 years we have won 108 trophies across 42 sports, with 10 children going on to compete at athletics or cross-country at a national level – two going on to training with Team GB and one, Tom Wilstead, going on to earn a first team place with Bristol Bears."
In 2019 £60,000 was allocated from the Sugar Tax scheme to build a pavilion on the field across the road from the school in Blackhorse Lane, behind the Emersons Green FC field.
Mr Botten said: "Currently the field can’t be used by the school, as it has no toilets and other facilities.
"However, our new pavilion would bring this field back into use, both for the school and for other local sports groups, including Emersons Green FC."
The sponsorship lottery is similar to one Bristol Rovers organise to choose a kit sponsor each year, with a draw held from among donors.
Mr Botten said: "We are seeking to secure £500 pledges from 100 local businesses or individuals, with the lucky winner getting to name the pavilion after their business for the next ten years."
The sponsorship includes a sign and advertising board on the pavilion building itself and a sign on Blackhorse Lane.
All donors will have their details published on the school website, in its newsletter and on a special fund-raising banner outside the school.
Once the list of 100 is complete an evening event will be held to draw the winner, and afterwards all donors will have their contribution celebrated with a permanent banner on the side of the pavilion.
School business leader Debbie Beazer said: “We are hoping to hold the lottery in March 2022, with the pavilion opening to coincide with the tenth anniversary of the London 2012 Olympics."
Anyone who would like to become one of the 100 community champions should email Mr Botten at email@example.com or call 01454 866570.