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Teesside Sea Cadets have been using Hemlington Lake to develop their canoeing and kayaking skills – and they’re brushing the competition aside.

In June the canoe polo team travelled to Scotland where they won all their matches against other Sea Cadet teams from across the North East and Scotland.

Their outstanding performance secured qualification to represent the Northern Area which covers northern England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and one unit in Bermuda.

The team will now travel down to London to play at the Excel Centre in September against teams from all over the UK.

It’s the first time Teesside Sea Cadets have reached this stage and qualified in kayaking for the national finals in many years.

Their team manager PO (SCC) Kirsty Calvert said: “This is a massive achievement for the cadets – and if they win in the finals, they’ll be confirmed as the best canoe polo team in the Sea Cadets.

“I can honestly say their success couldn’t have been achieved without the resources and facilities that we have had use of at Hemlington Lake.

“It’s made a huge difference, and I’m grateful to the team down at the Lake and the local councillors for all their help and support of the last few months.

“The team is made up of cadets from all over Teesside, so Hemlington is perfect as a central training point and we look forward to using it for many years to come.”

Hemlington Ward Councillor Nicky Walker said: “I’m delighted to hear of the Sea Cadets’ success, which is clearly down to a lot of hard work and dedication.

“Hemlington Lake is rightly popular with local residents and the current staff there go out of their way to ensure it’s a fantastic amenity for the whole town, so it’s great to see it enjoyed by yet another community group.

“I will follow the canoe polo team’s progress with interest, and wish the very best of luck for September’s finals.”

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