Olympic hero hails outstanding Elliot

Sir Steve Redgrave with Elliot Hatton.
Sir Steve Redgrave with Elliot Hatton.

Burlington Junior School pupil Elliot Hatton had a day to remember when Olympic legend Steve Redgrave visited to present him with a new national sports award.

The 10-year-old received the first Sporting Promise Outstanding Young Person Award and was presented with his trophy by the five-time gold medallist.

The rowing hero also got involved with a sports festival on the school field, where 80 children got to try out a host of different activities.

Sir Steve said: “Elliot is our first award winner and he is a great individual and very, very skilled at his chosen sport of cricket.

“He had some difficulties at home when his father wasn’t very well, and when he was bullied at school, which made him start to be withdrawn, but through sport he has become more engaged.

“His enthusiasm has rubbed off on his class and other people. He is a big asset to the school.

“This just shows the powerful part that sport can play in the lives of young people. It was fantastic to meet with Elliot and his friends today and see the enthusiasm they have for all these sports activities.

As well as a visit from one of the country’s most decorated sports stars, Elliot’s prize also included a cheque for £1,000 to spend on developing sport at the school.

Elliot, who captains the under 11’s team at Sewerby Cricket Club, has also represented Yorkshire under 10s this year and a number of his cricket coaches were at the presentation.

He said: “It has been absolutely amazing to have a true sporting legend give me an award - I won’t ever forget it.

“I’m so thankful to my teachers and my family for their support over the past year - they have been brilliant.”

The Sporting Promise is an award-winning grass roots sports designed to reflect the powerful impact that sport can have on young people.

Elliot, who started his big day by getting to hold one of Sir Steve’s gold medals, was nominated by his teacher, Kerry Scruton, who said: “The most rewarding part of my job is seeing transformational change in a young person.

“Last year, Elliot was having some difficulties at home and in school. His dad became ill and around the same time, some of his friends started bullying him. He lost all confidence and self-esteem and become very negative about school.

“We chose Elliot to be a Sporting Promise sports leader at the school, as we thought it would help build his confidence. He was proud to have been chosen - it rebuilt his self-assurance and self-belief and also meant that he developed positive friendships with different groups of children.

“The change we have all seen in Elliot since he became a sports leader is unbelievable - he is now communicating much better and is much more positive about school.

“It was an amazing day. All the children were very excited to have such a fantastic opportunity to take part in something so big.”