TWO sporting rookies from Salisbury are set to benefit from funding grants raised at Wiltshire Council’s inaugural Business and Sports Gala Dinner.
Orienteering athletes Emily Benham and Lucy Butt were among the 14 names on the recipient list to receive funding from the £30,000 raised by businesses and organisations at the County Hall event on Thursday.
The pot of money will help fund a special foundation to build on the annual Funding Future Olympians and Paralympians grant, which provides financial help to local elite athletes.
“I’m delighted to have received this grant, which will fund a high altitude training camp in Italy to help me pursue my bid for World Championship gold,” said Morgan’s Vale mountain bike orienteering star Benham.
The scheme, which has been running for four years, covers essential costs such as transport, equipment, training, accommodation and more.
Lucy, 14, was also ecstatic to be chosen for funding.
She said: “Orienteering has been my life for as long as I can remember, and this funding will help me be the best I can possibly be.
“It will also help me raise the profile of orienteering, as many people don’t even realise you can do it competitively.”
Former England rugby captain Phil de Glanville hosted the celebration evening, with 2012 Paralympics champion Mark Colbourne also speaking at the event.