National call-up for young Yarmouth roller skaters

GREAT Yarmouth is on a roll adding a whole new crop of names to its skating hall of fame and harking back to a golden era.

In the 1950s rock ‘n’ roll meant mostly roll in the resort which produced champion after champion, cranking up the popularity of the sport to near mania levels with regular shows featuring a cast of skating stars.

Now Retroskate Artistic Roller Skating Club, one of the country’s newest clubs, is poised to repeat that remarkable success with four young skaters already on the national radar and with invitations to join two national teams.

For two of the skaters, the current British boys champion Harley Hunt aged nine, and still the youngest skater in the national free skating training squad Harlee Wicks aged six, this will be their second invite.

For Stella Mavroudis, 12, and Dulcie Read, 10, it will be the first time they have trained alongside the best in the country.

The four all received a further surprise when a second letter arrived inviting them all into the British international figure skating squad, the first time into this squad for all of them.

Donna Wicks, who coaches at Retroskate along with skating husband Glenn, said it was an outstanding achievement and particularly for the girls who had only been skating competitively for just over a year and were inching along the edge of the rink clinging to the rail not long before that.

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Joining the national teams would be a great experience she said allowing the youngsters to benefit from top class tuition and mingle with world-class competitors.

All of them were dedicated and talented, training at least three times a week.

Mrs Wicks said: “Not having a rink for so many years meant we skipped a generation but there are parents and grandparents who used to do it who are encouraging them. Yarmouth was for skating, it always has been.

“It is what we are good at. It is such a big part of Yarmouth, there have been so many great skaters from here and it looks like now we are going to continue. The children are doing it and having fun and enjoying it.”

The Retroskateyoungsters are now looking forward to the British Championships in Peterborough next month and also hoping for some international acclaim in Croatia which is only open to national squad members.

The free skating squad focuses on jumps, twirls and two or three minute artistic routines.

The four skaters travelled to Nottingham last weekend to meet the new GB coaching team and train with other squad skaters for the first of five or six squad days in the next year.

The young skaters and club members are looking for sponsorship to help fund training equipment, If you would like more details on this or feel you can help please contact Angie on 01493 854349 or email