THE Lancashire Telegraph's Grassroots supplement has provided comprehensive coverage of amateur sport across East Lancashire for nearly two decades.

Since it was launched in 1998, the weekly pull-out has been dedicated to covering stories from a thriving and busy sports scene, both at junior and senior level and from main stream to more specialised pursuits.

East Lancashire is as rich as it is diverse when it comes to amateur sport and, spread across six boroughs, it is a constant source to tap in to.

While football and rugby feature prominently, Grassroots covers 10 senior and three junior football leagues and has five established rugby union clubs in the area, every other sport from archery to snooker and judo to gymnastics gets its fair share of coverage.

School sport is also important and, working closely with borough School Games Organisers, Grassroots is a perfect platform to showcase talents at that level.

However, it is not all about success stories, cup winners and champions as Grassroots also focuses on the important issues and stories 'behind the scenes'; highlighting the work unsung heroes do to make sure others can achieve their goals and ambitions.

Over the years, Grassroots has charted and championed the rise of many budding sports stars who have progressed up through the amateur ranks.

The likes of Samantha Murray, Jon Schofield and Steven Burke have all 'graduated' from Grassroots and have gone on to compete and succeed on biggest stage of all - winning medals at the Olympic Games.