Published on December 9th, 2014 | by nioa-development


Schools Orienteering Report – December 2014

So far this year, 5 school Orienteering events have been held across Northern Ireland. The uptake of these events has been generally well received. We have had almost 250 individual children take part at least once in the events which has been promising.

There were some very promising performances across all of the events. Some of the Omagh Integrated Primary School students, many of whom were taking part in their first Orienteering event were very impressive in completing the butterfly patterned Orienteering course at Gibson Primary School in Omagh. The Gibson PS students had the obvious advantage of having a familiar grounds to navigate! All in all, the students really enjoyed the experience of Orienteering individually on their own in a safe environment. Much thanks to Helen Baxter for assisting at this event.

Our next event was delivered at Gortin Activity Centre which was mapped this last year. Once again, a butterfly patterned course on a double sided map was the order of the day for the two local Primary schools in Gortin. Again, it was an event which ran very smoothly and the effects of the experience has meant interest from the two schools in doing the activity more often with the Community Association’s facilities available to them. Thanks must go to Jonathan Porter and Teresa Finlay in assisting deliver a very worthwhile activity.

Parkanaur was the venue for the next event, with Royal School Dungannon and Integrated College Dungannon taking part in White, Yellow and Orange standard courses. Both schools really relished the challenge and though conditions had been poor in the lead up to the event, well planned courses by Helen Baxter meant a valuable experience was gained by those participating. Thanks again to Helen for planning the courses, and to new-daddy Allan Bogle for his assistance in delivering the event.

Omagh Integrated Primary School were obviously enjoying the experience of Orienteering and showed their eagerness by bringing 46 of their finest P6’s to Gortin Glen Forest Park. They were given some expert coaching advice from our very own Allan Bogle, following on from their experience in Gibson Primary School,which was well received and appreciated by the teacher’s. They completed the white course in good time. Thanks again to Allan for his help.

Our final school’s event of 2014 took place in Somerset Park in Coleraine, Students from Eden Primary School, Milburn Primary School & Magherafelt High School took part. It was a very well supported event with all the schools commenting on how well prepared the courses were and the positive experience their students had. Thanks to Fred Corscadden, who  planned tricky white and yellow courses, which was very much appreciated. Also thanks again to Allan for assisting.

Schools have faced ever increasing pressures with teachers time and travel costs having an impact on their participation in sport generally, not just Orienteering. Many thanks to those schools who have supported our events.

Next Semesters School Events will be updated on the Events Calendar shortly. If you know any schools that might be interested in developing Orienteering at their school, feel free to contact me. If you are interested in volunteering at these events, please let me know also. We are able to cover travel expenses for volunteers.


About the Author

Conor Fadian is the Active Clubs Co-ordinator for NI Orienteering. His areas of work revolve around schools and community development projects. He can be contacted at

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