A successful year for Tug of War

Lt Billy Lannigan looks back at a successful year for Tug of War:

Scottish ACFA Championships Perth 2014

The ACFA Scottish Tug of War Championship was again held in Perth in 2014.  The Glasgow and Lanarkshire boys and girls teams had been first for the past few years and for the first time this year had two teams entered in each class.

After a hard days pulling the Battalions teams finished 1st and 3rd which was a great achievement. There was also a mixed event after the main competition was concluded – just as a bit of fun.

National ACFA Championships York 2014

The ACFA Nationals Championships was again held in York – this year’s competition being during the Battalion’s Annual Camp.  Tug of War is growing within the ACF which is reflected in the number of teams competing, which has increased year by year.

The standard of this year’s competition was exceptionally high and the boys team narrowly missed out on reaching the semi-finals due to one fault; the girls team reached the semi finals – finishing 4th overall. A terrific effort was put in by all competitors.

National UK Championships Belfast 2014

For the second year in a row the Battalion team took part in civilian competitions – including representing Scotland at youth level against the other home nations – the highest level of competition in the UK.

The rain battered down for the entire day but this did not dampen the spirits of our pullers who, as always, gave their all.  Our boys team finished 3rd in both events – our girls finishing 2nd in both. This truly was a great achievement by all.

International GENSB Championships Folkstone 2014

Once again the young pullers of Europe gathered to compete under the GENSB banner. This year’s tournament was at St Martin’s Plain, Folkestone, Kent in association with the Army Cadet Force. Around 550 competitors from 9 different countries formed 39 junior teams made up of junior male and junior female pullers.

The GENSB competition saw Northern Ireland and Scotland enter junior teams into the event for the first time.

Scotland’s final position was 32nd out of 39 which for the very first time pulling at this level was a significant achievement.

The ethos of the GENSB competition is a friendly international event, hosted on a budget, with the price of accommodation capped at an affordable level for all competitors.  Studies by UK Sports suggest that in addition to access to transport and the availability of good facilities, cost is a huge barrier to participation in sport by young people. As such, GENSB is an important event in terms of encouraging young people involved in tug of war, and this is demonstrated by the number of countries that take part in GENSB every year.  Next year’s competition is held in Heino, Netherlands which we hope to attend.

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