Carnival fever crosses the UK, with Bristol 'first out of the blocks'

4 August 2016

  • Bristol first of ten carnivals hosted by Leonard Cheshire Disability.
  • Brazilian culture and accessible sport showcased to mark Rio Games. 
  • Events part of diverse programme for Paralympic year.

British record-holding athlete Ryan Raghoo will star on Friday as Bristol’s Cossham Gardens hosts the first of 10 nationwide 'Cheshire Carnivals' to celebrate the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

With the Olympic opening ceremony taking place the same day, disabled residents, family, friends and staff will enjoy a taste of Rio. 

Brazilian food, drink, music and entertainment will all be laid on. Activities will range from wheelchair dancing and basketball through to discuss throwing and even 'rocket launching'.

Rising para-athletics star Ryan will demonstrate his long-jumping prowess and describe the different ways people of all abilities can be supported into sport. 

'When I compete for medals, really I am competing to change perceptions of disabled people,' says Ryan.

'I can’t wait to meet the residents at Cossham Gardens, discuss the journey I have had since being born with cerebral palsy, and enjoy the Brazilian entertainment together with everyone.'

To mark the Paralympic year, Leonard Cheshire is carrying out a range of activities to create opportunities for and from sport for disabled people.

We began 2016 by highlighting to politicians and the media the barriers to sport faced by disabled people.

Since then we have enabled disabled people to enjoy tennis and snooker at the world renowned Crucible and National Tennis Centre respectively.

Joining forces with Wimbledon wheelchair tennis champion Jordanne Whiley, we’ve illustrated the benefits to mental health that come with sport too.

Athletics and cycling world record holder Kadeena Cox has also linked up with Leonard Cheshire, helping us to challenge misconceptions of disability. 

It doesn’t end there. Building on the success of our long-running programmes supporting participation in everything from boxing to boccia, we’re now looking at which sports and activities we should run more widely post-Paralympics.

Leonard Cheshire Disability’s Carnivals — our 'Cheshire Carnivals' — will be staged across Great Britain throughout August and September.

After Bristol, the Rio roadshow will roll into Bath, Cumbria, Gloucester, Inverness, Kent, London, Newport, Nottingham and Sutton Coldfield.

Media enquiries

For media enquiries, and high-resolution photographs, please email Barney Cullum or call 020 3242 0313. 

Out of hours: 07903 949 388. Or call the general press office number on: 020 3242 0399.

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