MADLEY have underlined their pre-eminence in primary school sport by winning the Herefordshire Sport Primary School of the Year award for a third successive year.

Headteacher Lee Batstone said that he was proud and pleased that his 206-pupil school had completed a notable hat-trick.

“It’s probably the range of sports and how much we invest in terms of time, money and energy in giving the children a wide-range of sporting experiences,” he explained.

“There’s plenty of competition with internal stuff in school as well.”

Olympic year proved a huge spur to the school, even above their normal level of sporting activity, with pupils given the opportunity to try out 25 of the 29 Olympic events.

“We wanted to try to cover all 29 so we didn’t quite manage it, but came close,” said Batstone.

“We took the pupils to the BMX championships and we have just built a BMX track in school with some building works that we had left over so we’re trying to cover and continue them so that the legacy continues.”

The school’s innovative link with Madley Tennis Club, which has enabled all of the pupils to become part of the club, has also proved a big success.

“That’s working really well with parents using that with the children after school as well,” said Batstone. “The aim is to try to get people to use facilities that are there for enjoyment then, if they want to take it a step further then perhaps we’ll have someone who goes on to play professionally.”

Just because Madley have won the Primary School award for three straight years, Batstone, himself a keen sportsman who has been at Madley for eight years, is looking to maintain and improve on the standards.

“We’ll carry on building on the sporting projects and try to get as many people involved as we can,” he added.

“We’re looking for any kind of links that we can get, not just in Herefordshire and we’ll take the pupils to as many sporting places as we can.”