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Llandarcy Academy of Sport Launch Phase Two

Neath Port Talbot College (NPTC) is celebrating Wales' proud sporting heritage whilst helping to develop sporting stars of the future.

The College's new £6 million Academy of Sport in Llandarcy was officially opened yesterday (Mon) as it also plays host to the Following the Flame Olympic exhibition, which celebrates Wales in the Olympics and Paralympics.

The new centre boasts a national standard multi-use sports hall, climbing wall, all-weather 3G pitch, a multi-use games area and an indoor bounding track.

College Principal, Mark Dacey, said: "The exhibition was the ideal platform to allow them to officially open the new sports facilities at Llandarcy.

"I am so pleased we are able to not just bring together the official opening of the next phase of Llandarcy Academy of Sport, but to bring it together with the opening of the Following the Flame exhibition in Neath Port Talbot.

"Following the Flame will be a fantastic vehicle for raising the aspirations of everyone in the county, through the incredible stories of our athletes. We are very proud that we have been able to provide what we consider to be the very best sporting facilities of any FE College in Wales, for the people of Neath Port Talbot. I am now more confident than ever that the Academy of Sport at Llandarcy will play an important part in the continued development of Welsh sport at regional, national and international levels."

Guests at the launch included MP Peter Hain, former Olympians Non Evans, Helen Grandon, Steve Brace and 4 x 400m and 4 x 400m hurdles Coach Adrian Thomas, amongst many others.

The exhibition, which is touring Wales, includes film and video footage, Olympic torches and Tanni Grey-Thompson's winning wheelchair, a selection of Olympic medals and other memorabilia. The story of Huw ''Jumbo'' Edwards, a rower who won two Olympic gold medals in an hour at the 1932 games, and Irene Steer, a swimmer who became the first Welsh woman to win an Olympic medal in 1912 are also highlighted.

One thousand five hundred children from 40 schools have booked to attend supported by NPT's 14 - 19 Network funding. It is also open every day to the public between 9am and 7pm and at weekends from 10am to 4pm.

The exhibition has been organised in partnership with Neath Port Talbot College, Neath Port Talbot County Borough Council, Neath Port Talbot Council for Voluntary Service and Communities First.

Pic Cap: Peter Hain officially opens the Llandarcy Academy of Sport as well as the new Following the Flame Olympic exhibition, with Neath Port Talbot College's Chairman of Governors, Gaynor Richards, and College Principal, Mark Dacey.