Rio Paralympian to open school fete

Abbie Hunnisett, Rio 2016 Paralympian
Abbie Hunnisett, Rio 2016 Paralympian

Rio 2016 Paralympian Abbie Hunnisett will be opening the Friends of Ingfield Manor School Grand Summer Fete at Five Oaks, Billingshurst, on Sunday June 11 (2pm).

Abbie is a former pupil of the school.

She will introduce the start of the afternoon by Holy Trinity School Orchestra, who are based in Crawley.

They will be followed by a martial arts demonstration by students at Rikkyo School, in Rudgwick, and then a performance by the ever popular Horsham Bluebelles.

The performances will be rounded off by Euphoria Steel band, which is the only ‘pan-round-neck’ band south of the Thames, and is based in Brighton.

Abbie Hunnisett said: “I’m thrilled to be able to open the Friends Fete. It’s a lovely way of saying ‘thank you’ to everyone at the school for all the hard work and dedication put in to help me become the person I am today.”

Abbie represented Great Britain at Rio 2016 in the F32 Club Throw event. She was pupil at the school when it was simply a primary school, and so left at age 11. The school now takes students up to age 18.

Hazel Darby, School Principal, said: “We are delighted that Abbie can support the fete. She recently gave an inspirational talk to our students about her ‘Rio Experience’ and presented the school with a framed Rio 2016 sports-shirt to thank the school for all its support in her early years.

“We are always so grateful for the hard work and support of The Friends. I’m looking forward to a great afternoon for all the family.”

Once again a big attraction is the unique and popular 10¼” gauge steam railway, Ingfield Light Railway, which is open to the public especially on fete day.

The fun dog show is on again this year, with entries starting at 1pm.

All the family will be able to enjoy a massive bouncy castle and fun fair attractions, trampolines, ‘Owls Out and About’, Boccia, face painting, stalls, sideshows and refreshments.

Mr Don Newport, Chairman of the Friends of Ingfield, said: “We have a fun-packed afternoon planned – we hope that everyone has a good time and spends a lot of money. We are very grateful for all the help from pupils, students, staff, parents and many many supporters that makes our fete such a success every year.”

Ingfield Manor School is a day and weekly boarding school for primary and secondary aged pupils with cerebral palsy or similar. It has a unique place in the development of Conductive Education in this country. The School for Parents works with children aged 0 to 5 and their families.

The Friends of Ingfield is a small voluntary group of local people dedicated to supporting the work of the School and School for Parents. The fete is their main event of the year.