THE Phoenix Summer Games has taken place in Catterick Garrison for the final time this week as veterans and personnel from four UK recovery centres came together for the sporting event.

It is the fifth time Help for Heroes' Phoenix House has hosted and organised activities for wounded, injured and sick personnel and veterans, and was the last time for the summer event – but in future will host the winter version instead.

Traditionally, the week kicks off with a tough gym challenge and ends with several of the team members getting a soaking during a raft-building exercise at Ellerton Lake.

Events in between included boccia, sitting volleyball, archery, wheelchair basketball, swimming and a quiz.

Each is designed so that everyone can participate on an even basis, regardless of injury or ability.

“We look at what someone can do, not what they can’t and find ways to enable them to do it,” said Mark Airey, physical development coach at Phoenix House.

“Publicity around the Invictus and Warrior Games does a great job at demonstrating how sport helps in a person’s recovery but it doesn’t have to be at that high level.

"The Phoenix Summer Games provides an opportunity for the people we support to try out a wide variety of sports at grass roots level."

The Games includes teams from four Help for Heroes centres at Catterick Garrison, Tedworth, Plymouth and Colchester.

Private Scott McNeice, a health care assistant in the Queen Alexandra’s Royal Army Nursing Corps, said: "It is a competition but there is a lot of banter between us, as there should be.

"I'm still recovering from an operation to amputate my left leg from upper knee but I am having a great time. I'm competing in the Invictus Games in Sydney in October so this is a practice run for me."