Described as an amazing and maturing experience via Twitter, Hadley Learning Community appeared to have a wonderful time on their sports tour to Belgium. Both the netball and football teams travelled by ferry before arriving in the beautiful small city of Mechelen.
The tour began with an excursion to Walibi Belgium, a theme park located in Wavre (not far from Brussels), which gave the kids (and staff!) a great chance to let off some steam and enjoy the various attractions. They then returned to Mechelen where the group could explore and get a better feel for what their host city had to offer.
Monday marked the first round of fixtures for the teams. The football team were faced against two excellent sides in RRC Boitsfort & FC St Michel, and although they were defeated, it was a valuable learning experience for the team. On the court, the netball side played at a local international school based in Brussels for some intense and competitive games!
On Tuesday, the group travelled to Brussels to explore the nation’s capital city, with a quick stop for a photo opportunity at the Atomium. This gave both teams the chance to enjoy their second round of fixtures.
The boys returned for revenge against RRC Boitsfort & FC St Michel. Although they lost for a second time, they bowed out in a great effort, taking both teams to the wire. The girls enjoyed an in-house netball tournament at a local sports hall, acting as the perfect team-building exercise which gave them the chance to learn each other’s strengths and weaknesses.
Before attending sporting exercises in the afternoon, Tuesday morning was the perfect opportunity to let the group loose and experience Belgium’s wonderful chocolate selection. Needless to say, they really enjoyed this part of the trip!
The final day saw them make their way back to the UK, with time for one final excursion in the Trench of Death. It was a truly valuable experience for the group as the trench at Diksmuide is the last remnant of the Belgian First World War trench system. With two history teachers within the staff team, it was a great opportunity to link their visit to Belgium with the school curriculum.
Overall, it was a fantastic experience for both staff and student. The PE department at Hadley Learning Community described it as ‘an excellent all-round experience for our students made even better by our Rayburn rep’, with the best moment of the adventure being ‘the ability to play sport against foreign opposition’.
For more information on our sports tours across Europe and beyond, click here.