Special Olympics GB National Games Sheffield 2017

Many of you will have heard of the Olympic Games, last games Rio 2016, then followed by the Paralympics, which were also in Rio, Brazil 2016.

However, you may not have heard of Special Olympics GB National Games, which this year are to be held in Sheffield, the Special Olympics GB National Games Sheffield 2017. Yes, in Sheffield, UK, my own city.

Special Olympics Great Britain is a sporting organisation for children and adults with intellectual disabilities that operates in EnglandScotland and Wales. It is part of the global Special Olympics movement,  the world’s largest sports organisation for children and adults with intellectual disabilities.


A  selection of YouTube videos

Special Olympics GB’s ‘Play Unified’ film

Special Olympics GB National Games, 2017 Preview

SOGB National Summer Games 2017 Venues

Tickets to the Opening Ceremony – 

It is now not long for these games to commence and all great events need kicking-off in the right way, and SUFC are your hosts for an evening of celebration and entertainment.

The opening ceremony will be on Tuesday 8th August 2017 at the Bramhall Lane Stadium, the home of one of Sheffield’s football clubs, Sheffield United

from 5.00pm – 9.00pm (doors open 3.30pm).

Tickets are now on, (click on the link), sale.

Appearing will be James Toseland  and Tony Hadley, at the opening ceremony of the Special Olympics GB Sheffield Games 2017

Special Olympics Great Britain 2017 Sheffield Games

Athletes will be arriving on Monday 7 th August 2017.  The Games will commence on Tuesday 8th August 2017 until Friday 11 August 2017 with most of the sports taking place at venues in and around Sheffield, however, the exceptions are the Bowls Indoor, which is at the Indoor Bowls Centre, Urban Road, Doncaster, DN4 0EP directions and Sailing at Pugney’s Watersports Centre & Country Park, Asdale Road, of Denby Dale Road, Wakefield, WF2 7BN directions.

See below the games, venues, dates and times. Directions to Sheffield venues in  City centre and other venues.

Tickets are not required to attend the various games, except the opening ceremony, but some of the smaller venues may not be able to accommodate large numbers of spectators over and above the families of the athletes taking part, further guidance on this is being obtained and this will be updated when this is received.

Checked out which sports to go and watch?

During the games Sheffield is enabling other attractions, however, these are not to detract from the games themselves. These athletes have been in training for many years and we would not wish to do anything to hinder their participation and their enjoyment.

There is also an Activity festival

Special Olympics GB National Summer Games Activity Festival

Special Olympics GB National Summer Games Activity Festival

The Special Olympics Summer Games are coming to Sheffield from 7 – 11 August. Lots of people with a learning disability from the city are going to be involved – as athletes taking part,as volunteers helping out or as spectators cheering .Now there’s another way for local people with a learning disability to be part of this fantastic event.

The Activity Festival on Wednesday 9 August offers the chance to try out new sports. It takes place at the English Institute for Sport (Sheffield) from 12.00pm – 5.00pm.

Look at the Activity Festival Poster for more information on the event.


Signed-up for the Activity festival?

Wed 9 Aug, 12.00 – 5.00

  • It’s not too late – register on the attached form and contact joanne.meecham@sogb.org.uk
  • If you would like to attend the Activity Festival please complete the Registration Form
  • Lots of people have signed-up already but are leaving early – can you be flexible with your times so people are able to stay to the end?

Experience the Special Olympics Fringe

Alongside the Games themselves, there’ll be some great stuff going on in and around the city centre all week, highlighting the talents of Sheffielders with learning disabilities and the creativity of some great local organisations. It’s taking place at the same time as Sheffield-by-the-Seaside, so there’ll be a carnival atmosphere in town if you can support your clients to get down.

Here’s a taster of what to expect:

  • Enjoy performances in Tudor Square from Under the Stars and Practically Theatre
  • Visit the art exhibition (‘Seeing is Believing’) in the Millennium Galleries and photo exhibition in the Winter Garden showcasing works by people with learning disabilities and other artists
  • Create a visual record of people during the Games through photography and digital journalism in Tudor Square, and by contributing to a mass work of art that will be displayed in the Winter Garden

Programme (so far) of fringe activities for the Games.

These have been developed by some much-valued local groups – ArtWorks, Burton Street Foundation, Disability Sheffield Centre for Independent Living and Under the Stars. We’re also very pleased to welcome Practically Theatre to Sheffield as well, who will also perform.



7 August


Millennium Galleries




Winter Garden


Opening of ‘Seeing is Believing’ – an exhibition curated byArtWorks and showcasing works by local people with learning disabilities and other artists, which ‘hopes to challenge people’s perceptions of intellectual disabilities through celebrating the creativity and ambition of the artists involved.’


Opening of ‘Get Yourself Active’, a photo exhibition run byDisability Sheffield Centre for Independent Living with portraits of local disabled people and the stars of the Games – the athletes.


8 August

Tudor Square Opening of Tudor Square information marquee, including I am ….. we are’ – a piece of interactive art offered by Burton Street, where photos and statements of visitors to the marquee build a collage of Sheffield during the Games.
Wednesday 9 August 2.00pm

Tudor Square

Performance by Practically Theatre, an organisation working with people with learning disabilities and those without access to theatre – the piece is called ‘A New Journey’ and follows an athlete’s journey to the Special Olympics.
Thursday 10 August 11.15am and 1.00pm

Tudor Square



Showroom Cinema

Contemporary theatre performance called ‘Memory Stones’ byUnder the Stars, a music and drama social enterprise by and for people with learning disabilities, whose performers create original shows based on their own ideas.


An afternoon of films from Sheffield at the Showroom Cinema, depicting empowering and thought-provoking portrayals of disability.

As well as these activities, there’ll be a display at Moor Market. And throughout the week, a mass work of art will be developed, depicting the Special Olympics image. People from all walks of life will contribute to this – visitors to the Games, athletes, performances as well of course local people.

This is a unique event for Sheffield and we wish well to all, the participants (Athletes), their families and friends, Special Olympics Great Britain, volunteers for the Special Olympics Great Britain 2017 Sheffield Games, providers partaking in the fringe events, the people of Sheffield and any others not mentioned.

All of you have a great time

Watching the sports – where to go and when

 As promised, here’s some further info about the venues to help you decide where you, your family and the people you may support could go to watch.

Special Olympics GB want to welcome spectators to any of the Games’ events.  With 8,000 friends and families of the athletes expected in Sheffield for the Games, all wanting to watch, this does mean that some venues are going to fill up fast. But here are some top tips about the venues likely to have more space where you could go to watch. We’ve included comments from Special Olympics GB.

Venues likely to have most space


Ice Sheffield

Coleridge Road Sheffield S9 5DA

Gymnastics (Artistic)   Wed Thurs Fri

·         SOGB comment – All facilities fully accessible.




Sheffield Hallam University Sports Park

Bawtry Road Sheffield S9 1UA

Football Tue Wed Thurs Fri
·         SOGB comment – Viewing of pitch 1, pitch 2 and finals pitches would be best from the balcony on the clubhouse or the tarmac path to the side of the pitches. Viewing of pitches 3 and 4 will be best from the balcony of the clubhouse as access to pitch side is on grass. Volunteers are on hand to assist as required. 
English Institute for Sport (Sheffield)

Coleridge Road Sheffield S9 5DA

Badminton Tue Wed Thurs Fri
Activity Festival   Wed    
Gymnastics (Rhythmic)   Wed Thurs Fri
Table Tennis Tues Wed Thurs Fri
Young Athletes   Wed    
Motor Activity

Training Programme

Tue Wed    
·         SOGB comment – All areas are accessible. Table tennis and badminton have accessible viewing adjacent to the pull out grandstands. There will be over 30 athletes with accessible vehicle requirements competing at EISS – please talk to the stewards who will assist you with your own specific parking needs.
Forge Valley Community School

Forge Valley Sports Centre

Wood Lane Sheffield S6 5HG

Powerlifting     Thurs  
Cycling Tues Wed Thurs Fri
·         SOGB comment – Accessible access to the powerlifting is via the main school entrance rather than the side entrance for general spectators. Volunteers at the welcome desk will be on hand to escort. Access to the cycle track is via the lift inside the sports centre adjacent to the stair case. Access is then via a trackway walkway to the side of the field of play. This trackway may be difficult for some motorised accessible vehicles so please ask a volunteer for assistance if necessary.
Sheffield Hallam University

City Athletics Centre

Stadium Way Sheffield S9 3HL

Athletics Tues Wed Thurs Fri
·         SOGB comment – The entry from Stadium Way is a steep slope – volunteers are on hand to assist. The viewing from the grandstand has accessible spaces at the back and the front. Other viewing is on chairs and rugs on the grass slopes. Access to the toilets is either in front of the clubhouse to the temporary facilities or up the slope and to the back of the clubhouse for the existing accessible toilet. Please give yourself time to get around and ask for help as required.
Pugney’s Watersports Centre & Country Park

Asdale Road (off Denby Dale Road)

Wakefield WF2 7BN

Sailing   Wed Thurs Fri


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