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GB gymnast joins leisure event at Letchworth Festival

Hermione with a flower pattern painted on her face with a younger girl with a tiger painted on her face and pretending to growl with her mouth and hand
Hermione joining in the fun getting her face painted

Junior Team GB gymnast, Hermione Mellor, joined more than 1,500 North Herts residents at the opening weekend of the annual Letchworth Festival.

The event, hosted and sponsored by Everyone Active, North Herts Council’s new leisure provider, featured a variety of fitness and wellbeing activities, marking the start of the five-week long festival. The weekend kicked off with a free family fun day on Saturday, taking place in Letchworth town centre in the morning and continuing at North Herts Leisure Centre in the afternoon.

In a dedicated session at the leisure centre especially for children under five, Hermione, 14, one of six gymnasts on the junior GB tumbling team, supported and encouraged parents as their young children explored the world of gymnastics for the first time. Inspiring the attendees with her talent, the young athlete ended the session with a crowd-pleasing routine.

The morning started in Leys Square, Letchworth, as part of a community outreach occasion, hosted by members of North Herts Leisure Centres’ membership and fitness teams. Alongside taking part in fitness challenges - including a standing long jump and 200m row - members of the local community also had the opportunity to find out more about the variety of memberships available across the leisure centres in North Herts and beyond.

Hermione standing with her thumb up next to someone in a large bee costume as a little boy looks at them both
Hermione with Everyone Active’s bee mascot

In addition to Hermione’s fully-booked exclusive 45-minute gymnastics session, other free events held at the centre included fully booked soft play and badminton sessions, squash, and face painting. A health walk also took place for visitors to connect with members of their local community while exploring the scenes of North Herts. The day also featured face painters and the chance to have a photo with Everyone Active’s mascot, the Everyone Active Bee.

On Sunday, the popular Letchworth Lido opened its doors to two free sessions. 26 children took part in the Rookie Lifeguard session which covered the basics of water safety ahead of Drown Prevention Week on June 15, with visitors also having the opportunity to take part in a beginners’ yoga session. Author of The Lido Guide, Emma Pushill, made a special appearance to discuss all things lidos and community pools.

The events marked the beginning of the volunteer-run Letchworth Festival, which returns this year for five weeks of fitness, music and art events for the whole family to enjoy.

Kirsty Jones, Area Contract Activity & Wellbeing Manager at Everyone Active, said: "We are proud to have hosted a weekend of family fun to mark the beginning of this treasured festival, and are so pleased so many families were able to join us on the day. A visit from Hermione made the whole weekend feel like a true celebration. She was an inspiration to both young and older children during the event, showcasing the incredible young talent we have here in North Herts. She is helping to pave the way for the next generation of athletes, and I know these first experiences of gymnastics for the young children will stay with them for a long time.”

Sarah Kingsley, North Herts Council's Service Director for Place, added: “We’re delighted to see such a fantastic turnout for the opening weekend of the Letchworth Festival. The presence of Hermione Mellor, a rising star in the gymnastics world, added a special touch to the event and inspired many young attendees. This festival is a testament to our community spirit and our commitment to promoting health and wellbeing across North Herts.”

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