AN OLYMPIAN presented a teenaged coach from Littlehampton with a top award for her efforts to inspire young athletes and gymnasts.
Heather Wallace was presented with the Young Coach of the Year award by six-time swimming world champion Mark Foster at a recent awards ceremony in Brighton.
Heather, a year-13 student at The Littleham-pton Academy, started helping about six years ago, working twice a week, alongside a gymnastics coach, at primary school trampoline and gymnastics clubs – all while still managing her own school work.
Speaking of her success, she said: “I am really proud to receive Young Coach of the Year through the Active Sussex Awards because I’ve worked hard helping people to improve in sport for years so it was great to just be nominated, let alone win.
“The night was really enjoyable and I was honoured to receive the award from someone as successful as Mark Foster.”
She added: “Hearing about the successes from the other nominees has helped to inspire me to work harder and push myself that little bit more to think of different ways to improve my coaching.”
Heather is a higher sports leader at school.
She was nominated by her teacher, Sandy Fell, who said she was ‘incredibly proud’ of Heather and all the hard work she puts in to help coach other children.
In addition to her efforts with primary school pupils, Heather also assists teaching staff in preparing the academy’s gymnastics team for competitions.
Heather now hopes to go on to university to study a sports-related degree, next year.