Join In Local Sport: Follow in the footsteps of Sheffield’s Jessica Ennis - VIDEO

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YOUNGSTERS inspired by Olympic golden girl Jessica Ennis and other London 2012 athletes are being encouraged to follow in their footsteps with free sports sessions as part of Join In Local Sport, writes Graham Walker.

The government backed Olympic legacy charity, which helped Jess on the road to golden glory and is developing the stars of the future, wants to get as many people as possible to join in at their local sports venues on August 18 and 19 - the first weekend between the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Inspiration: Olympic champion Jessica Ennis. Photo: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire.

Inspiration: Olympic champion Jessica Ennis. Photo: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire.

Olympians and Paralympians will be on hand at some venues where sport began for them, to highlight the role of local sports clubs in the making of champions.

Free sports events in Sheffield during this weekend event, which is being called The Join In Weekend, will include judo, table tennis, ride games, tennnis, walking, running, cricket, football and hockey. For full details and venues visit

VIDEO: Press the play button to watch our Join In Local Sport video report, about Sheffield youngesters being inspired to follow in the footsteps of Olympic champion Jessica Ennis.

Local sports groups are also being encouraged to take advantage, creating a shop window within their community for the opportunities there are for people inspired by the Games to help out, give time, support, watch or play sport.

Sport clubs across the UK know that London 2012 will generate unprecedented enthusiasm for sport in the UK. The Join In Weekend will capture that enthusiasm and bring it back to the place it begins for all great champions - their local sports facilities.

The Join In Weekend will enable clubs to convert this once in a lifetime wave of interest into help, support and membership from their local community.

Sheffield’s own Olympic legend Seb Coe, Chairman of the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games ( LOCOG), said: “We are really happy to support the ‘Join In’ project, it is a great idea that means that thousands of people across the UK can turn up and take part in local sports just after the Olympic Games finishes.

“Millions will be inspired by what they witness over the summer and I hope this creates opportunities in every community for people to join in their local sports clubs.”

Phil Smith, Director of Sport, Sport England, said: “The ‘Join In Weekend’ is a great opportunity for sports clubs to showcase their work and get new people involved in all aspects of their activities. ‘Join in’ will give clubs a great platform to harness people’s enthusiasm for sport during a home Games.”