18 March 2021

Hogan Lovells awards 2021 Nicholas Cheffings Para Athlete Bursary

With less than six months remaining until this summer’s Tokyo Paralympic Games, Hogan Lovells has awarded 10 Para athletes the Nicholas Cheffings Para Athlete Bursary 2021.

Now in its fourth year, the 2021 bursary will provide financial support to Para athletes with aspirations for this summer’s Tokyo Paralympic Games, recognised by the BPA and their National Governing Body, to help with any aspect of their sporting development. This could include purchasing or replacing vital equipment, paying for travel to training camps and competitions, or additional coaching and training support services.

The 2021 recipients are:

  • Gaz Choudhry, Wheelchair Basketball
  • Kim Daybell, Para Table Tennis
  • Charlotte Henshaw, Para canoe
  • Jack Hunter-Spivey, Para Table tennis
  • Tully Kearney, Para Swimming
  • Maria Lyle, Para Athletics
  • Stephen Miller, Para Athletics
  • George Peasgood, Para Triathlon & Para Cycling
  • Christopher Skelley, Judo
  • Jessica Stretton, Archery

Para table tennis player Kim Daybell in action at Rio 2016

Para table tennis player Kim Daybell believes the funding will make a huge difference to his sporting ambitions: “The last year has been very tough. I am a junior doctor and have been working full-time on the front line during the pandemic. I’ve spent eight months working on a COVID-19 ward, and four months in A&E at a north London hospital. I’m looking forward to starting back training full-time for Tokyo, but will still be required to work. All our equipment and training facilities are in Sheffield, so the bursary funding will be used to rent space to play table tennis, pay a coach based in London, hire training partners, and buy home gym equipment.”

Launched in 2017, the Para Athlete Bursary has so far provided support to 36 GB Para athletes, including 2020 bursary recipient and Para canoeist, Laura Sugar, who commented: “The financial support from Hogan Lovells helped me purchase my boat just before the lockdown began which meant I had this to train with throughout the lockdown, so it has enhanced my training tremendously. I took the lockdown and postponement of the Paralympics as an opportunity to improve my technique and really break down how to achieve my aims. When we eventually returned to training it was great to be back with the team - and I managed to improve my personal best in the UK so all the hard work had paid off.”

In addition to supporting the bursary recipients, Hogan Lovells continues to support their Paralympic, World, European and Commonwealth champion Ollie Hynd MBE, an ambassador for the firm since 2015.

The firm is a Gold Partner and the Official Legal Services Provider to the British Paralympic Association (BPA) through until the 2024 Paris Paralympic Games, providing continued legal support to the organisation across all areas. In 2020 this included critical support on the impact of COVID-19 and the rescheduling of the Tokyo 2020 Summer Games, such as advice and guidance on contracts, competition qualification and financing.

Hogan Lovells Global Managing Partner for Diversity & Inclusion and Responsible Business, Susan Bright, said: “We have enjoyed a long-standing relationship with the BPA since before the Beijing 2008 Paralympic Games, supporting them for over a decade with legal advice, secondments, in-Games legal support and volunteers. As a member of The Valuable 500 and a Disability Confident Committed employer in the UK, Hogan Lovells shares the BPA’s mission to make the UK the leading Paralympic nation through excellence at the Games, and advocating a better world for disabled people through sport. The ParalympicsGB team have achieved many historic performances and through investing in our Para athletes we are excited to see more in Tokyo this summer.”

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