2018 Para Swimming European Championships coming to Dublin
Commenting on the news President of the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) Sir Philip Craven said: “We are greatly excited to be staging this event in Dublin and would like to the thank the organising committee and all delivery partners for their enthusiasm so far.
“This Championships will be the largest Para sport event ever to held in Ireland and I am confident that with multiple Paralympic, world and defending European champions in action, the public will be treated to the very best of what Para swimming has to offer.
On foot of the remarkable success of the Irish team at the London 2012 Paralympic Games Paralympics Ireland was determined to find a way to maintain the increased public awareness, commercial support and media engagement generated at that time. Hosting a major para sport competition for very first time in Ireland, right at the midpoint between the Rio and Tokyo Games was seen as the ideal solution.
Support of key agencies was vital so Swim Ireland, Sport Ireland, and Fáilte Ireland all committed to becoming event partners and the Irish bid was deemed successful with Dublin 2018 awarded the rights to host this event on behalf of World Para Swimming.
Addressing the audience at the announcement CEO of Paralympics Ireland and Chairperson of the Organising Committee Miriam Malone said: “We firmly believe true understanding and appreciation of the elite athletic nature of Paralympic athletes can only realised by witnessing the sport live.
Irish Paralympic athletes have been competing and achieving consistently all over world for many years. We are incredibly excited and extremely proud that now we can bring them home and provide the opportunity for a supportive Irish public to see for themselves their talent and that of their European counterparts.”
Three time Paralympian and bronze medallist from the Rio Paralympic Games twenty two year old Ellen Keane spoke of what is means to her, and the team: “To think that we will have the chance to show our families, friends and the public just what we have dedicated our lives to is so very special. Representing Ireland on the international stage is a tremendous honour and to do so in front of a home crowd is what we all dream of. We are so excited to showcase elite Para sport to the country and provide this platform to grow the sport of Para swimming in Ireland, and hopefully build a precious legacy towards Tokyo and beyond.”
A video has been commissioned to celebrate the Championships which is being released across all social media today and can be downloaded and shared here