Sophie Allen does cartwheels after KF Training windfall

GIFTED gymnast Sophie Allen is tumbling closer to being crowned world champion after becoming the first recipient of a £1,000 donation from a North-East firm to help fund her training and international travel.

The 13-year-old from Peterlee is a member of the Deerness Gymnastics Academy in Durham and has competed in tumbling competitions across the globe. In 2012 she was crowned British champion in her age group – an accolade which enabled her to train with some of the country’s top athletes.

She was awarded a silver medal for Great Britain in the 2014 Loule Cup, an international tumbling competition held in Portugal, brought home a silver medal at the British Championships, was ranked Britain’s number two seed and competed in the recent 2015 Tumbling World Championships in Denmark.

Her bid to be crowned world champion is now being assisted by KF Training which has donated £1,000 from its community development fund to help finance Sophie’s travel and training expenses. She is the first beneficiary of the fund, which was launched by the Peterlee-based company to support worthy local causes.

FLEXIBLE WORKING: Sophie Allen with Sophie with Sara O’Brien (left) and Kelly Lee of KF Training.

FLEXIBLE WORKING: Sophie Allen with Sophie with Sara O’Brien (left) and Kelly Lee of KF Training.

Sophie said: “I spend a lot of time travelling all over the country and abroad for competitions and it can become quite expensive so I’m so grateful for the funding from KF Training. Gymnastics has been my passion for many years and tumbling is fantastic way of keeping fit.”

“It combines several disciplines of gymnastics and brings many benefits. It helps me to strengthen my body, improve my concentration and generally keep me feeling healthy and well.”

Kelly Lee, managing director of KF Training which delivers business-focused skills programmes and consultancy services across the North East, North West, Yorkshire and Cumbria, said: “Sophie has already achieved so much at such a young age and is clearly a talented gymnast – definitely one for the future.

“We are happy to support her and we’ll certainly be monitoring her progress in the coming months and years.

The fast-growing business was launched in 2011 by managing director Kelly Lee and now employs 52 people. Sara O’Brien joined in December 2014 as commercial director and has driven forward a significant change management and expansion plan throughout 2015. With four specialist training divisions covering innovation, leadership and management, continuous improvement and business skills.

Kelly added: “At KF Training we’re committed to supporting worthy causes, which is why we decided to set up the community development fund. It’s our way of giving something back to the community in which we operate.”