Over the weekend the College hosted 169 competitors and 40 adult coaches, all taking part in the national Junior Inter-Regional Championships. The event, which takes place once every twelve years in Northern Ireland, had to be rescheduled at short notice due to the royal funeral. When we were approached, we were only too happy to oblige by opening up our facilities and providing makeshift overnight accommodation in the Assembly and Sports Halls.
The competitors were representing the 12 regions of British Orienteering, including Northern Ireland. The teams from GB flew in on 10 flights to both Belfast airports, with the NW England team coming on the Stena ferry.
The overall winners of the weekend were Scotland, with Yorkshire and Humberside second and NW England third.
The Alistair Scott Ceilidh Band provided Saturday evening entertainment in the Sports Hall. This meant that around 100 campbeds were carried outside for the ceilidh and carried back in afterwards in time for lights out at 22:30! The championships were a great success and there was a wonderful atmosphere on site.
Organiser Stephen Gilmore from Lagan Valley Orienteers wrote, “Many, many thanks for the use of Shimna Integrated College over the past weekend, especially at such short notice. We had really positive comments from the team mangers. Thanks to the assistance of Robbie and Margaret the event not only happened, but with quality accommodation and perfect breakfasts as well.”