AN athletics academy in York is offering bursaries to give more youngsters a chance to get in to sport.

Anyone who is taking part in this year’s Valhalla Throws Academy can now apply for a bursary towards sport equipment thanks to support from TalkTalk who are providing York’s Ultra Fibre Optic (UFO) full fibre internet connection across the city.

The academy is in its second year and, starting on October 6, it will welcome youngsters of all abilities aged 11 and over to learn or improve their skills in discus, shot put and javelin.

The bursary will enable the recipient to carry on training and developing their skills and will be presented at the end of the Academy in April 2020.

The academy will take place over six months and participants will be taught by guest coaches including Shot Put professional Scott Lincoln who will be representing Great Britain in this year’s European Team Championships. There will also be sport nutritionists and sport psychologists present at event days to share their top tips on keeping a healthy mind and body in sport.

Head coach, Paul Wilson, said: “Preparations are well underway for this year’s academy and we’re delighted at the response we’ve had so far from the young people across York. With only two months to go, we can’t wait to get started. Being able to offer a bursary means a lot as we can continue to help the young people even when the academy has finished - thanks must go to York’s UFO from TalkTalk for their support. We look forward to welcoming everyone in October.”

York’s UFO marketing manager, Michelle McCarthy, said: “We’re proud to support Valhalla Throws Academy’s bursary programme, it’s a great opportunity for young people from all walks of life to get involved and develop their passion for sport. We’re committed to supporting community initiatives that make a real difference to the people we meet as we continue to roll out our full fibre network across York. Valhalla Throws Academy’s bursary is a fantastic step towards making athletics in the local area more inclusive and accessible for everyone; we encourage any young person reading this to get involved.”

The UFO network currently passes 40,000 homes and businesses enabling residents in Dringhouses, Woodthorpe, Foxwood, Chapelfields, Poppleton, Huntington, New Earswick, Rawcliffe, Clifton and parts of Holgate and The Groves to connect. York’s UFO will pass 55,000 homes and businesses across the city by 2020.