Sports Campus Stories: Community & Resilience

Resilience has been a strong theme throughout the school’s campaign to build the Sports Campus. Five long years of fundraising, campaigning, planning and construction challenges were testing for all stakeholders, all against the backdrop of the school struggling through each winter with waterlogged pitches and endless cancelled PE lessons.


The challenge of the pandemic

The pandemic was the greatest challenge of all, and yet against all odds, the school managed to complete the construction on schedule and on budget during the lockdowns – quite a feat in itself. What’s more, having such an important fundraising goal united the whole school community during the pandemic like never before, as all fundraising activities moved to virtual, online initiatives. Students, parents, grandparents, staff and alumni were all actively involved in fundraising, and participated in sponsored challenges throughout lockdowns to keep active, stay positive, and raise funds along the way. Fun videos were created to launch each event, allowing students to see their teachers and other school staff (albeit on camera) being positive and encouraging them to be active during lockdown.

Positivity breeding positivity

 The resilience of the school community has been remarkable, and hasn’t gone unnoticed. The positivity created by the Sports Campus project inspired parents, alumni and local business people who sent messages of support, offers to match fund the student fundraising efforts, and most significantly, attracted the attention of the lead sponsor for the Sports Campus, ek robotics, to step forward and donate £107,000 to ensure the Sports Campus was fully funded and able to open its doors to students as quickly as possible. 

The students and community can now benefit in full from the light, bright and welcoming Sports Campus, seven days a week, all year round – but more than that, the community has been inspired and energised by being able to be part of a success story during a time of great challenge, and that will always be part of the Sports Campus legacy

“I’ve never had so much physical exercise in my life! And fun. It has helped me bond with my son more and has made me discover things about him that I didn’t know. I am so proud. When I first read your message about the virtual challenge it was not really my thing. However one day I was feeling so low over so many things I just got the inspiration when I read your email to shake off my misery and the dust off my bicycle in the garden shed and just do it.”Today was really good. Thanks again

– RLS Parent, May 2020

RLS Virtual Marathon

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