A LOCAL figure skater has had a grand send-off before she makes her way to the Winter Special Olympics.

Jenny Lee, 20, from Keighley, is representing Great Britain at the Special Olympics World Winter Games in Austria.

She began a final training session at the Bradford Ice Arena at 5am today, and at 10am supporters turned out to wish her well for the contest - the biggest of her career.

The Lord Mayor and Lady Mayoress of Bradford, Cllr Geoff Reid and wife Chris, were among those who turned up for the big send-off.

Lee, who has a learning disability and is hearing impaired, said she was "excited, proud and also a bit nervous".

Mum Helena Lee said they had originally been told their daughter may not walk, so to see her now made them incredibly proud.

She said: "You can imagine what I feel. It's amazing.

"We are so proud of her, and the amount of skills she has gained - not just ice skating, but social skills, learning the importance of perseverance and also getting up very early in the morning and being very organised."

Coach Adrian Jack said the figure skater's training regime was often up to 10 hours a week.

He said: "Just to get her ready for the competition has been a privilege for me."

Barry Thorne, of Bradford Disability Sport and Leisure, praised the Lee family and their friends and supporters for raising the £2,500 needed to finance the competition entry.

He said: "The whole organisation wishes her the best."