The symposium will be staged in October. Photo: Dora Damian

The symposium will be staged in October. Photo: Dora Damian

A top gathering of women climbers will take place in Manchester later this year.

The Women’s Climbing Symposium is in its sixth year and has established itself as a top draw for some of the best female proponents of the sport.

The event takes place at a different venue each year, with the aim of inspiring and developing women’s climbing through collective climbing experiences, the latest research and the best coaching.

Conceived by pro-climber Shauna Coxsey, who is currently representing Great Britain in the International Federation of Sport Climbing World Cup and who has just won gold in the first round, together with Stephanie Meysner, the WCS began as a response to tackle the similar barriers described by female climbers as having a limiting effect on their ability to progress in the sport.

This year’s event will take place in October at The Depot. WCS co-director Shauna Coxsey said: “With access to top climbing coaches and leading female figures in sport, it is no surprise that over the last five years the WCS has attracted attendees from all across Europe.

“We are incredibly excited to bring the event to Manchester this year and will be announcing the full programme over the next few months.”

The event is expected to sell out. Photo: Dora Damian

The event is expected to sell out. Photo: Dora Damian

The one-day event has been fronted by a roster of top sporting talent over the years, including climber Catherine Destivelle, downhill mountain bike racing champion Rachel Atherton and UK climbers Hazel Findlay, Michaela Tracy, Mina Leslie-Wujastyk and Leah Crane.

Co-director Emma Flaherty was announced as a finalist in the Women’s Sports Trust #BeAGameChanger Awards. Determined by a public vote, closing on 1 May, the award recognises individuals and organisations progressing women’s sport.

She said: “Climbing has never been more popular and women’s participation in the sport is greater than ever before.

“Therefore, the role of the WCS is more important than ever before, enabling women to make sure they have a full and enriched experience of this amazing sport.”

As reported by grough, Emma has also just been appointed as a British Mountaineering Council’s vice-president and among other tasks will work closely with the BMC women’s development group.

More details of the symposium can be found on its website.