Written by Kerina Lake from Swansea Bay Orienteering Club
In 2022 Sport Wales approached us to make a short video featuring Orienteering as part of a series highlighting non-mainstream sports.
Members of Swansea Bay Orienteering Club and South Wales orienteering clubs took part, with filming taking place at a traditional event in Merthyr Mawr and a MapRun event in Cardiff. A producer from Boom Plant Cymru, saw this video and reached out to us, in the hope of collaborating on content for a children’s programme, Awyr Iach on S4C.
After an initial meeting where we looked at ideas, we came up with a format that would work well. I identified Craig-y-Nos as a location and secured permission, then approached a local Welsh Medium School – Ysgol Gellionnen to see if they would like to take part.
In advance of the filming I put on two intro sessions for the pupils in Years 3, 4 & 5, one at their school, which they had mapped a few years previously and a session in a local Park Coed Gwilym, so they would have an idea of what Orienteering is and so they would be familiar with the maps, the equipment and with what they were would be asked to do on the day.
Five pupils were identified to take part, and I asked Welsh speaker and club member Ffion Kestin if she would be happy to be involved in the filming as my Welsh was certainly not up to the standard needed.
I created a couple of courses and placed controls across the park so the filming crew could choose which would work best on the day. We were very lucky with the weather and it went really well, the kids had an amazing day and it was a really positive experience.
Sam Mitchell and Diana McClure from the club came along to support on the day and along with myself, we filled in as extra’s as needed.
I can’t wait to see the programme when it airs in February, and see Orienteering as the main feature in the programme.