About The Games

Special Olympics Great Britain is delighted to have chosen the great city of Sheffield to host our 10th National Games from Monday 7 August until Saturday 12 August 2017.

It will be the largest sports event to take place in GB for people with an intellectual (learning) disability.  They are a major undertaking involving many months of planning, organisation and fundraising.  They involve the recruitment and training of a large number of volunteers and officials.

This will be the second time that the Special Olympics GB National Summer Games have been held in Sheffield – the last time was in 1993.

Why Are The Games Important?

  • The Games gives athletes with an intellectual (learning) disability the opportunity to achieve and to demonstrate their abilities to the community.
  • The event will attract around 2,600 athletes with intellectual (learning) disabilities from across England, Scotland and Wales. Athletes will compete in a variety of sports.
  • Through participation in this large national competition, people with an intellectual (learning) disability will acquire the confidence and social and life skills that will help their inclusion in society.
  • The games offer people the opportunity to give back to the community and make a difference when coaching, officiating and volunteering at the event.
  • Over 4 days of competition will supported by 800 coaches and 750 volunteers and 150 officials.
  • We will welcome over 5,000 family members and friends to the stands to cheer on and celebrate our athletes.

Who Are We?

We are, Special Olympics GB, the largest registered charity providing year-round sports training and competition opportunities for people with intellectual (learning) disabilities.  The National Games is our showpiece event held every four years for our athletes, families and supporters.

Click here to find out more about Special Olympics GB.

The Games Opening Ceremony

Sheffield United’s famous and world-class Bramall Lane stadium will be venue for the Opening Ceremony to take place on Tuesday 8 August 2017.

Details of tickets for the opening ceremony will appear on the website shortly.

“This is great news to announce when the club is celebrating the 160th anniversary of its stadium. We are thrilled that Bramall Lane has been chosen to host the showpiece opening ceremony of Special Olympics GB’s National Summer Games.”
Dave McCarthy, Sheffield United Operations Director
“The stadium will be a great place for people from Sheffield and beyond to attend and get right behind this impressive event which will have a real impact when it is held in Sheffield in August 2017.”
Karen Wallin, CEO Special Olympics GB

Games Ambassadors

Kell Brook

British Professional Boxer
IBF Welterweight Title Champion

“Having met a number of the Yorkshire based athletes who are taking part in the Special Olympics National Games in Sheffield, I was able to understand how passionate people with learning disability are about sport. It reinforced to me that people with disability care about sport as much as me and everyone else. I couldn’t be prouder to stand up for these exceptional athletes with learning disabilities.”

Jim Carter

Downton Abbey Actor

“Having met some of the young people who had benefitted from Special Olympics’ work; having listened to their inspiring stories and seen their enthusiasm at first hand, I was honoured to accept the invitation to become an Ambassador.
“I’m looking forward to helping to promote the National Summer Games in Sheffield next year where 2,600 athletes with an intellectual disability will show their abilities and talents.
“I hope that huge numbers will turn out to support these dedicated young people.”

Jack Rutter

Paralympic Athlete
Captain- England Cerebral Palsy Football Team

“I’m really excited to be attending the special Olympics. Disability came into my life later on in life but it has given me the most amazing opportunities and experiences, I’ve played at the top level and captained the GB football team at the Paralympics. I want to support all areas of disability sport and being an ambassador for this truly inspiring event makes me very proud! Good luck to all those involved!”

Tony Currie

Sheffield United Legend

“Being so associated with the great city of Sheffield, I am delighted to support the 2017 National Summer Games being held in the city.”

David Hirst

Sheffield Wednesday Hero

“Special Olympics GB athletes are heading to these Games with great skill, passion and dreams. I am thrilled to play a small part in supporting this great event.”

Nick Matthews

Three Time World Squash Champ

“”I’m very proud to be an Ambassador for the 2017 Special Olympics GB National Summer Games being held in my home city of Sheffield this summer.

“I know it will be an unforgettable experience for everyone involved and will hopefully inspire people of all abilities to make sport a part of their lives.”