THERE was fun on the sands but not quite in the sun when youngsters from Dorset special schools enjoyed activities on Weymouth Beach.

More than 200 young people took part in the Dorset Special Schools Beach Festival which helped to kick off sporting activities on the beach this summer.

It was a mixed bag of weather on the day but it didn’t stop participants trying sailing, kayaking, paddleboarding, gig rowing, golf, boccia and dodgeball.

There were also craft, circus skills and drumming sessions.

The event is organised by Dorset County Council’s sports and physical activity team along with Weymouth and Portland Borough Council.

The team is also organising a sports festival for disabled adults later this month, plus the Dorset Beach Sports Festival this weekend when anyone can try watersports for a small charge, and free beach sports.

County council sports and physical activity manager Dave Franks said: “This festival is a great way of getting young people involved in trying out unusual activities.

“The festival really is a team effort and I must thank The Chesil Trust, Sainsbury’s, the MV Freedom boat for the disabled, Westfield Arts College and Weymouth College for their support. We’re also lucky to have some wonderful volunteers.”

Lisa Ward, a teacher at Westfield Arts College, added: “The unexpected rain certainly didn’t stop the children having fun. We had a brilliant time.”

County Council Cabinet member for community services Colin Jamieson said: “We’re proud that this year’s events will give over 500 adults and children with disabilities the chance to develop their potential and try a fantastic range of sports and activities.”

The watersports were provided as part of DCC’s Life’s an Adventure programme, which encourages adults, families, disabled people and people aged over 50 to get active and try activities.

Find out more at dorsetforyou.