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School in a spin after scooping national award at sporting event

Teachers and pupils at an academy in Gedling are in a spin after scooping a top sporting accolade at an awards event.

Carlton le Willows Academy secured the gong for Partner of the Year in Table Tennis England’s annual Pride of Table Tennis Awards.

The award was presented to headteacher Craig Weaver at a ceremony in London on Saturday night (March 3) when volunteers, officials, coaches and personalities from across the UK were honoured for their work.

After accepting the award, Mr Weaver said he was delighted and honoured for the school to have been nominated among so many worthy winners, dubbed by award organisers as the “heartbeat” of the sport.

He said: “A passion and enthusiasm for table tennis at Carlton le Willows sprang from the students themselves, who embraced the sport to such an extent that from just four outdoor table tennis tables we now have a multi-thousand pound, national standard table tennis centre on our site.

“Through our partnership with Table Tennis England, we are able to offer not only our own students, but the wider table tennis community – girls and boys, men and women of all ages – the chance to follow a development pathway all the way through from beginner to elite level.”

Table Tennis England Talent Development Coach Chris Turner said: “Carlton le Willows has been a fantastic partner in what we’re trying to achieve in Nottingham, which is to provide table tennis opportunities for the community, as well as support young players, helping them discover what they are capable of and play at whatever level they choose – whether this is at local level or on the international stage.

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“We are very thankful to have found a partner in Carlton le Willows, who recognise what a powerful sport table tennis can be. Long may the partnership continue and thrive.”

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