CHILDREN from Balloch and St Kessog’s primaries and Balloch Early Learning and Childcare Centre have given the official mascot of the Glasgow 2018 European Championships, Bonnie, the seal of approval.

Bonnie the Seal visited children at the Balloch Campus to spread the news about the first ever European Championships – a multi-sport event taking place across Scotland from August 2-12 involving Aquatics, Cycling, Golf, Gymnastics, Rowing and Triathlon.

Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park will stage the European Open Water Swimming Championships at Drumkinnon Bay, Loch Lomond, from August 8-12, giving sports fans an opportunity to see some of the best aquatics stars on the continent take to the iconic waters of Loch Lomond – for free.

Deputy Provost Karen Conaghan, convener of educational services, told the Reporter: “I am pleased the children got the opportunity to meet Bonnie the Seal, which is a fun way to get the children interested in the European Championships.

“We are fortunate to have one of the events here in West Dunbartonshire and I hope residents will support the local open water championships in Loch Lomond. I wish everyone competing good luck and I’m sure Glasgow will host another very successful sporting event.”

After pupils watched a short animated video of Bonnie’s backstory, Bonnie entertained them by playing a game of charades, acting out the six sports involved in the competition and getting the children to guess the sport. Bonnie then toured the campus to say hello to everyone and visit pupils from Balloch Early Learning and Childcare Centre.

Deirdre McGowan, head teacher at St Kessog’s Primary School, said: “The children thoroughly enjoyed meeting Bonnie the Seal this week and learned about the different sports in the European Championships. We really appreciated the visit to our new school which celebrated the commencement of joint Balloch and St Kessog’s primaries after school clubs.”

National Park ranger and former pupil of Haldane Primary School, Jenna Law also attended the event.

She said: “I’m proud to work in the National Park and to be part of this fantastic event which will showcase everything Balloch and surrounding area has to offer.”