A NETBALL club in the district is enabling youngsters to develop their skills both on and off the court.

And for members of Hexham Junior Netball Club, that means getting the opportunity to travel abroad and learn from some of the game’s leading players and coaches.

The club, which is based at Haydon Bridge High School, has enjoyed a remarkable year. Its first ever club tour saw youngsters travel to Paris, where they spent three days taking part in competitive action, and also training with national standard players. Such was the success of the tour, lead coach Kathie Keady said plans are already in place to repeat the trip in 2021.

Next spring, the club is set to offer sports psychology training to its older members, to help them overcome the mental pressures of netball.

Hexham is a wide ranging club, offering netball for players aged from seven to 19. Everyone from complete beginners to accomplished performers are welcome to get involved.

Indeed, no fewer than 15 girls from the club have represented Northumberland at academy level.

Kathie said some of the more experienced players have been getting involved with coaching their younger counterparts, as a means of giving something back to the sport.

“We manage to accommodate beginners and advanced players,” said Kathie. “It’s really important to us that we welcome all standards as everyone has the potential to play this great sport. People develop at different rates and we allow that. We bring players from different schools together and strong friendships are formed.

“There is so much netball going on in the area for all ages. Netball clubs in Hexham, Prudhoe, Allendale and Ponteland offer great club netball, while there is walking netball for those wanting a slower version, and also a back to netball opportunity for adults looking for a recreational session.”

To get involved contact Kathie on 07467 957974.