Carrying the baton for Sheffield

Sheffield Commonwealth Games batonbearers, from left, Tricia Memmott, Bessie Sorsby and Jo Strong
Sheffield Commonwealth Games batonbearers, from left, Tricia Memmott, Bessie Sorsby and Jo Strong

Three Sheffield sporting heroes will carry the baton for the Commonwealth Games through the city this summer.

Jo Strong, Tricia Memmott and Bessie Sorsby were nominated for the Queen’s Baton Relay because of their outstanding fundraising or volunteering for local sport.

The baton is passing through all 70 Commonwealth nations before it arrives in the UK on May 20, arriving in Sheffield on June 1 on its way to Glasgow ready for the start of the Games on July 23.

Sheffield’s leg of the relay begins at St Nicholas’ Church in High Bradfield before moving on to Concord Leisure Centre in Shiregreen and ending at the English Institute of Sport in Attercliffe.

Jo Strong, aged 33, of Norton, was nominated by Sheffield International Venues for her work as a GP referral instructor at Graves Tennis and Leisure Centre and Springs Leisure Centre.

She attracts more than 250 people to her classes each week, helping cardiac and respiratory patients, who have been referred by their GP.

Jo set up the Graves Heart Raisers Heart Support Group, which has raised more than £3,000 for the British Heart Foundation.

She also organises the Santa Jog through the city centre for the BHF, works with the Sheffield Coronary Society and has started a choir for people with respiratory problems.

“The cardiac people, who have had a heart attack, have been through a life-changing event and they want to do anything they can to improve their health,” she said.

“It’s a weird feeling to be chosen as a baton bearer - I’m in shock. It’s really exciting and I’m honoured to have been nominated.”

Tricia Memmott, aged 24, who lives in Wincobank, volunteers with Activity Sheffield, helping adults with disabilities and other complex needs at Hillsborough Leisure Centre.

“Although at times the work can be very challenging, she continues to work with a smile on her face and with great enthusiasm,” said her nomination.

Bessie, aged 17, of Mosborough, was nominated by the Sheffield Academy of Young Leaders after volunteering for festivals and national events.

She is a member of the National Young Ambassadors Steering Group and was runner up in the Youth Sport Trust’s Young Person of the Year.