White Knuckle Thrills in Sheffield City Centre
07 July 2016
This weekend Sheffield welcomes 80 competitors to The British Bouldering Championship (BBC) in the heart of The Outdoor City. Headlining Sheffield’s major outdoor festival, Cliffhanger, the BBC is a not-to-be-missed spectator event whether you have a passion for climbing or just love the white knuckle thrills of a live competition. Expected to attract crowds of over 6000 to Devonshire Green over Saturday 9 July and Sunday 10 July, this is the first time the BBC has been hosted in Sheffield city centre and is free to watch.
The British Mountaineering Council (BMC) will be livestreaming all the action with world-class climbers Mina Leslie-Wujastyk and Gaz Parry, both former competitors in the BBCs themselves, commentating on the action as it happens. You can watch the live broadcast from the BMC website here.
Veteran British boulderer Dave Barrans, a regular competitor in the World Cup series is favourite in the Men’s category, whilst Sheffield’s own *IFSC World Cup champ and last year’s BBC winner Shauna Coxsey will be battling to retain her crown.
We spoke to Sheffield climbing talent Shauna Coxsey and asked how she felt about competing centre-stage in the city she calls home: “Winning the British Bouldering Championships here in Sheffield last year was amazing. I am excited to now call Sheffield my home and I'm really looking forward to competing in the city centre this year against some of Britain’s most talented climbers. There is a huge community of climbers and outdoor adventurers in the city. It's clear why Sheffield is The Outdoor City.
“The Women’s Climbing Symposium 2015 took place in Sheffield and it really showed how strong the climbing community is here. It's been great to see our community connecting with mountain bikers, runners, cyclists and walkers through The Outdoor City to celebrate and inspire each other. Having recently won the overall world title, I am excited to defend my British title right here in Sheffield– it doesn’t get much better than that.”
In true Sheffield style, whilst the serious contenders for this year’s competition are getting psyched, spectators and Cliffhanger Festival goers can enjoy live music, food and drinks on Friday and Saturday night.
Cllr Leigh Bramall, Deputy Leader of Sheffield City Council and Cabinet Member for Business and Economy said: “To say this year’s competition and the wider Cliffhanger Festival is going to be the best yet is an understatement. Moving it to the city centre means that even more people are going to be able to enjoy this gripping competition for free. Sheffield has a longstanding reputation for climbing, attracting everyone from world class talent to people that head out to the grit stone in the Peak District over the weekend to unwind. Many of this year’s competitors actually train here in Sheffield and the British Team meet regularly at The Climbing Works. Climbing is synonymous with Sheffield but we also have huge ride, walk and run communities and events like this bring everyone together to experience the full outdoor offer right here in the city centre.”
Image Credit: Alex Messenger – Shauna Coxsey competing at the 2015 BBC final