CANON Slade School hosted some of the world’s top schools athletes at the Schools’ International Athletic Board Cross Country Championships.

Teams from England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales battled it out for the top honours at the prestigious event.

It is an honour for any school to stage a showpiece cross country competition such as this, and Canon Slade has become a regular venue, having hosted two national events in recent years.

And their reputation has gone up another level as, following the SIAB event, it has been confirmed that Canon Slade will host the World Schools Cross Country Championships in April 2016.

And there was some home success also as Bolton primary school teams were also in action on the same course and grabbed the headlines.

The first primary school girl was Penny Townsend from St Thomas CE who was closely followed by her schoolmate Ella Pendlebury.

The first boy to cross the finish line was Thomas Massey from Horwich Parish. Behind him was Kyle Boulding from St Peters Smithills Dean.

Carol Brooking, head of PE at Canon Slade, was involved in running the showpiece event along with Maryon O’Donnell, vice-chairman, England; and Simon Rees of Canon Slade.

She said: “The day started out quite well as we had some lovely blue skies but it went horrendous as the day wore on.

“Our course is an established one but we decided to turn it around because of the standard of runners competing.

“England won the competition and there were quite a few runners from local primary schools who impressed and won their races.

“The course was harder for them because it was very muddy but the feedback we have been given was that it was a great experience for the runners.”

The SIAB championships are a four nations international competition for junior and intermediate age groups, with the national team selection based on performances at the National Cross Country Championships.