An Earby fencing starlet has secured a placement on a prestigious national future talent programme.
Lucy-Belle Williamson (10), of Victoria Crescent, will be part of the England Fencing Tomorrow’s Achievers programme for 2014.
This will allow the young talent to train with select under-15 fencers from across the country, in Oxford, every two months.
She will be under the guidance of some of the finest coaches in the land.
After a stellar 2013 in which Lucy-Belle won Gold and Bronze medals at the British Youth Championships, and medals at all but one of 25 regional competitions, she also fenced with the Malta cadet squad while on a well-earned Autumn break.
As there is no international competition for young fencers until the age of 13, she has now been advised by British coaches to fence abroad to gain experience and find opponents who will push her abilities further.
Lucy Belle said: “Being invited to fence with the squad in Malta was an amazing experience and it was really interesting to experience how they train.”
Her proud parents Ian and Jane say that despite the cost they will support her passion “every step of the way”.
Ian said: “Lucy-Belle is by far one of the most committed young athletes that I have ever seen.
“She understands balance in life but she is driven by a goal to be the best.
“Today, it is not enough to be passionate, you also need access to facilities, coaching and equipment and while Lucy-Belle has some of these, we know that her international competitions are going to need a lot of extra funds.”