A sports development scheme has given the opportunity for aspiring athletes in Watford to gain support.

Everyone Active’s Sporting Champions recruited local athletes to its scheme at Watford Leisure Centre in Central and Woodside. It aims to help up and coming athletes in the area reach their full potential.

Both centres are managed by Everyone Active on behalf of Watford Borough Council.

The scheme, which is running for its fourth year, will provide the athletes with facilities, support and funds for their training.

The athletes have been offered either gold, silver or bronze levels of support, all of which allow them access to Everyone Active’s 190 leisure facilities across the country.

Higher tiers offer funding for training and competition costs.

Current England powerchair football captain, Jonathan Bolding, who has led his country to a World Cup final and a European Cup final, has been awarded a silver sponsorship to support him with his sporting goals.

He was born with central core myopathy, a condition which affects muscles in the legs.

Mr Bolding said: “Central core myopathy hasn’t stopped me achieved things I thought I could only dream about.

“I have represented my country in over seven different counties and hopefully many more to come.”

Olympic silver medallist Colin Jackson CBE is continuing to support the scheme through his role as an ambassador.

Alongside some of Team GB’s top talent, he will provide both one-to-one and group mentoring opportunities to the athletes.

Mr Jackson said: “I’m proud to be involved with a scheme that is so dedicated to supporting athletic talent from grass roots up.

“I have seen this scheme continue to grow year-on-year and I think it’s so important that we continue to drive sporting excellence in our country.

“The Everyone Active Sporting Champions scheme has supported hundreds of talented athletes to achieve their sporting dreams and I can’t wait to see what this year’s intake go on to achieve.”

Over the past four years, Everyone Active’s Sporting Champions has invested more than £1million to help over 1000 athletes achieve success.