During the Diversity & Inclusivity focus week for our Return to the Table campaign, we helped to organise a visit to Halton Table Tennis Club by local sporting hero Jack-Hunter Spivey.

Jack spent the day talking about his recent achievements in the Paralympics in which he achieved a bronze medal, and inspiring dozens of school children to think about giving table tennis a go.

Halton TTC put an open invitation out to local schools to come and meet the Paralympian and have a knock around with him; an offer which many schools took up.

After the event, one girls mum wrote on social media:

“My little Ruby met you today she has spina bifida (she had her orange frame today). She’s been raving about how you got an Olympic medal and how she’s going to get one when she’s older! Pure example of what childhood inspiration should be! Thanks for the opportunity.”

In response Jack said:

“Winning medals and being successful is nice but getting messages like this make it all worthwhile!

Thanks to everyone who came down to see me today in Halton.

It fills me with so much joy knowing that in some small way this medal is helping to inspire others too.”

Halton TTC are running our programme TT Kidz, next month. If you live in the area and have been inspired to get your little ones to give table tennis a go, then you can still book your place by clicking here.

We also spoke to Jack about diversity and inclusion, and what his thoughts were on the topic around table tennis.

Jack said:

“Diversity and Inclusion to me means getting everyone involved, from every different background, from disability, to different races, different abilities, just getting everyone together and understanding that we can become one same family through sport.

“I think TTE have made big steps to become diverse and inclusive by adding Paralympic events especially at the English Nationals, but there is still a way to go between the Paralympics and Olympics side. We are one of the only sports in the world where our able bodied England programme mixes with our disabled programme. I train with some of the best able bodied players in England and we are one of the very few sports that do that and we should promote that more and bridge the gap between the Olympics and Paralympics.”