Phil Neville launches BBC Celebrate Sport fortnight

BBC Sports Personality of the Year 2011

Media City UK, Salford Quays
Thursday, 22 December
2000 GMT
BBC One, BBC Radio 5 Live & BBC Sport website
Phil Neville and children
Phil Neville and Everton mascot Changy join children at the Salford studios

Everton captain Phil Neville has launched the 'Celebrate Sport', two weeks of sport-related events in Salford.

In the run-up to Sports Personality of the Year, which will be held at MediaCityUK on Thursday 22 December, BBC North are holding a number of free shows and sessions for members of the public - with tickets still available.

The events include:

  • Jem Stansfield and Dr Yan Wong from Bang Goes the Theory exploring the science of football with guests from Manchester City
  • Dan Walker hosting the first edition of Football Focus in front of an audience (at Salford Lads' Club) and an Audience with Question of Sport
  • BBC Philharmonic's Christmas Concert with the Manchester United Foundation Youth Choir and BBC North staff singers, which will be broadcast on Radio Manchester
  • National Football Museum providing a sneak preview of their exhibits at the MC studios, before they relaunch in Manchester next spring.

Celebrate Sport runs until 22 December and involves major BBC departments based in Salford, including Children's, Learning, Sport and Radio 5live.

Speaking to BBC Radio Manchester, Neville said: "I have a disabled daughter and she does the same sports as my son who's able-bodied, and that's the beauty of sport - it does bring everyone together."

He added: "This [MediaCityUK] facility is unbelievable and I think now Manchester is definitely, for me, the capital of the media in England, and it's great to kick off this great campaign."

Regarding the BBC's expansion in Salford, he said: "It's great for me because obviously I don't have as far to travel to do the media stuff."

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