A 13-strong team of cheerleaders from Hartlepool are set to represent the UK in a top championship.
The Hartlepool Hawks will become Team UK at the European Cheerleading Championships, in Kopar in Slovenia on Saturday and Sunday.
The Hartlepool Hawks Movement, youth level 2 cheer dance team, and the junior level 5 stunt group called Fierce, will both be there.
They will be battling it out in mini cheer dance, mini cheer dance duet, mini pom dance duet, junior stunt group and junior cheer dance duet.
The girls who make up the team described how excited they were at the prospect.
Phoebe Hutchinson, 11, said: “It means a lot to me to represent the UK. We have been working extra hard every night.”
Being part of Team UK is a dream come true and has been a fantastic opportunity for me and the girls to be representing my country and finally getting the chance to show what we do bestEllie Lewis
Hollie Mudd, 10, is the youngest member of Team UK and said: “I am sure I will make Hartlepool proud of our club. I could not believe I was selected to go to Slovenia as there are a lot of very talented athletes in our club.”
Lauren May, 16, said: “It will be a memorable experience that will stick with us all.”
Faith Green, 11, said: “I am really excited to perform my amazing routines and have worked really hard as a group to get to this stage.”
A grateful Daisy Moran, 12, said: “I would like to take this opportunity to say how pleased and proud I am be part of Hartlepool Hawks and Team UK.”
Liberty Jewson, 11, said: “I have made amazing friends on my journey and I’m really excited to perform my routine.”
Emily Carney, 10, said she had “never been so excited when I was picked for the team to represent my country.”
Ellie Lewis, 15, said “I’m so thankful for everyone who has supported us on this journey and made this happen.”
Meghan Simpson, 15, said: “We have all been training extremely hard to get to the best we can be before the competition. I am so excited to experience this amazing opportunity with my teammates.”
Ellie Mae Rennie, 12, commented: “I have been doing cheer for nearly 2 years now and I have been offered so many opportunities throughout that time but I haven’t been given one as big as going to Europeans.”
Kadie Bradly, 11, said: “I am filled with excitement to have been given this chance to represent the UK in this competition.”
Jessica Dodd, 11, said: “It’s a big achievement for me as I’m so young, and always dreamed of competing on at an international competition but did not expect it to be this soon.”
Leah Wintersgill, 12, said: “I am really excited as the date gets nearer and I am also looking forward to meeting other teams from across Europe.”
Hawks founder Rebecca Taylor said: “We have managed to raise the total of £8,000 to cover costs to get our athletes to Europeans, and also with the help of our amazing sponsors we have got beautiful costumes, training kits and track suits.
“Big thank you to our sponsors; Dance Box, Sprint Print, Sporting Chance, Great British Bows, Samantha Farndale.”