JUMPING FOR JOY: Hannah Scott coming in first place in the sack race
JUMPING FOR JOY: Hannah Scott coming in first place in the sack race

THERE were laughs and smiles aplenty at an annual sports day in upper Teesdale.

Forest in Teesdale on a bright Bank Holiday Monday made the perfect setting for the get-together, which has been organised by Upper Teesdale Social Club since Queen Elizabeth II’s Silver Jubilee in 1977.

Inside the marquee, there were children’s crafts, baking entries and refreshments, as well as trophies handed out to the winners of traditional sports and games. These included the egg and spoon race, skipping, sack race and tug of war.

In the race to Cronkley Fell, Edward Seedhouse was the first boy home and Jessica Walton the first girl.

One of the organisers, Nicola Foster, said: “It’s all done for the children but everyone of all ages has a lot of fun. We’re a close knit community up here and we have a few of these kind of events – like the duck race, halloween party and Christmas party.”

Ian Findlay has been involved in the sports day for 39 years. He said: “We had one year when it was snowing – all the kiddies were wearing their full waterproofs and wellies but they were still racing. I have seen a lot of people growing up but it’s always lovely to see new children coming through.”

The nearby Forest of Teesdale Primary School has just nine pupils and Upper Teesdale Social Club is keen to extend an invite to other families in the dale.

Mr Findlay added: “In the old days, the sports day used to move between Newbiggin and Forest but lately it’s just been held here.

“But that may have to change because we use the chapel for the toilets and for electricity but that’s closing. One suggestion is to have it at the field at Langdon Beck Hotel.”