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Cockroft: Disability project is breaking boundaries

14/05/2017
Chelsea, PL/BT Disability Sport programme

British Paralympian looks back at the first season of the PL/BT Disability Sport initiative

It has been eight months since the Premier League/BT Disability Sport programme was launched at the London Stadium, the home of West Ham United and the 2012 London Paralympic and Olympic Games.

And to mark the first year of the three-year initiative, the Premier League and BT Sport have produced a short film which revists the stories of some of the disabled people who have been inspired to become more active through sport, developing new skills and confidence in the process.

The film, called Inspiring Disabled People Through Sport: Balding and Cockroft's Inspiring Stories, is hosted by BT Sport host Clare Balding and Paralympian Hannah Cockroft, who won two gold medals at the London 2012 Paralympics and who helped launch the scheme in September. 

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Watch: The PL/BT film in full

"I was so excited when I heard that the Premier League and BT were embarking on an inclusion programme around disability sport," Cockroft said. "When I was younger, I was not allowed to take part in sports due to health and safety concerns.

"However, programmes like this are breaking boundaries and stigmas that exist around disability sport. People don't realise that sport is not just physical activity, it's learning how to socialise, learning how to make friends and learning life skills.

"It's great that the participants now have a sense of belonging and that's what this whole initiative is all about."

Inspiring Disabled People Through Sport, featuring participants from Burnley, Crystal Palace, Chelsea, Middlesbrough, Southampton, Tottenham Hotspur, West Bromwich Albion and West Ham United, will be screened on BT Sport 1 at 2.15pm on Saturday, 13 May.

A short teaser of the film can be viewed above.

Oliver Philpott, Middlesbrough FC Foundation
Oliver Philpott is one of many people who have been inspired by the programme

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