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Hall of Fame

Welcome to the British Weight Lifting Hall of Fame.


The purpose of "the Hall" is to provide the ultimate peer-recognition by the British weightlifting community to the greatest performers in Olympic Weightlifting and Paralympic Powerlifting and significant contributors who have majorly assisted the development of either sport.


You can view a copy of our Hall of Fame Guidelines which outline the criteria for inclusion here.

Edward
Lawrence
Levy

  • World Champion (First ever)
  • British Champion (First ever)
  • Established 14 World Records
  • Jury Member at Athens 1896

    Edward Lawrence Levy won the inaugural World Weightlifting Championships and was also the first British national champion.

    Levy, was born in London, England in 1851.  Prior to taking up weightlifting, he was a member of the Birmingham Athletic Club. 

    In February 1891, Levy he took part in the first British Amateur Weightlifting Championship at the age of 40 and won the competition outright. 

    Two months later he travelled to London again to compete against champions from Brussels, Hamburg, England, Vienna, Italy, and Berlin in a three-day event.

    The competition primarily consisted of repetition and alternate pressing with 56 or 84 pounds in each hand.

    Upon its conclusion Levy was crowned the first World Weightlifting Competition. 

    Between 1891 and 1894, he established 14 world weightlifting records. 

    In 1896, at the first modern Olympics in Athens, he was as a member of the International Weightlifting Jury.

    Levy also founded the Amateur Gymnastics Federation of Great Britain and Ireland.

    Levy died in 1932 and in 1988, he was inducted into the International Jewish Sports Hall of Fame.

     

Launceston
Elliot

  • Olympic Champion
  • 2x Olympic Medallist
  • Multiple British Champion
  • British Record Holder

    Launceston Elliot was Great Britain’s first Olympic Champion in any sport at the inaugural Athens Olympics in 1896. He won Gold in the One-Handed Lift and took Silver in the Two-Handed event.

    He was born in India to Charles Elliot and his third wife Ann in 1874, but he was named after the Tasmanian city in Australia in which he was conceived. 

    In 1887, the 13-year-old Launceston began to train under the tutelage of the German weightlifter Eugen Sandow, regarded as the founder of modern-day bodybuilding.

    Nearly four years later, aged only 16, Elliot competed in the inaugural British weightlifting championships, held in the International Hall of the Café Monico in west London.

    Within three years he was crowned British champion.

    At the inaugural Olympics Elliot made it to the final of the two-handed lift event and faced off against Denmark's Viggo Jensen. Both men lifted 110kg.

    The Crown Prince of Greece  who chaired the jury decided to award gold to Jensen, who had lifted the weight cleanly, while Elliot had struggled.

    When it came the one-handed event the following day; Jensen had injured his shoulder and could not compete with Elliot's lift of 71kg which secured gold.

    In 1899 he went from strength to strength and set four new British records at the amateur championships.

    Despite weightlifting's absence from the programme four years later, The Athens Games was not the end of the Olympic adventure for Elliot either as he claimed 10th place for Britain in the discus at the Paris Olympiad.

    Elliot will be remembered as a true internationalist as despite spending most of his life in England and finding fame in Greece his daughter Nacy said “He was called Launceston, as he was conceived in Launceston, the capital of Tasmania. He was born in India, but he was Scottish to the bone

     

William
Albert
Pullum

  • BAWLA Founding Member 
  • Technical Official Pioneer
  • 15x British Featherweight Champion
  • GB Olympic Coach 1924 & 1948

    William Albert Pullum was one of the founding members of British Amateur Weight Lifters Association (BAWLA) in 1911 and acted as one of the first technical officials.

    During his weightlifting career he accumulated fifteen British Featherweight titles.

    He helped coach British lifters at the 1924 & 1948 Olympics. He also personally trained Olympians such as World Record Holder Ronald Walker, Alfred Baxter and Charlie Attenborough.

    He died in 1960, at age 73 and is buried in Camberwell New Cemetery.

     

Ronald
Walker

  • World & Olympic Record Holder
  • European Medallist
  • Olympian (Best Finish 4th)
  • Held 26 British Heavyweight records

    Ronald Walker was one of the greatest global weightlifters in the 1930’s, achieving superstardom by setting World & Olympic Snatch records in the Super-Heavyweight division.

    From 1931 to 1937, Walker who resided in Wakefield reigned as the British Heavyweight Champion.

    He won Silver at the European Championships in 1935 and the following year he recorded an official snatch World Record of 135kg in the Super-Heavyweight division at an event in London.

    Walker represented Great Britain at the 1936 Olympics. He set an Olympic record of 125kg in the snatch but had to settle 4th overall.

    In 1948 he died from cancer at the age of 40.

    During his lifetime Walker held 26 British Heavyweight records.

     

Al
Murray

  • First GB Head Coach (1948-1972)
  • Coached GB to 4 Olympic Medals
  • British & Scottish Champion
  • British Record Holder

Al Murray was appointed as the First Official GB Head Coach in 1948 and served until 1972.

He began his working life as a painter and decorator in his native Fife, but his prodigious feats as a young weightlifter led him more and more towards sport. 

Murray was a Scottish lightweight and middleweight champion as well as a British record holder in the late 1930s.

During the war he served as a staff sergeant-major during which he began to use his talent as a coach, devising an exercise for anti- aircraft gunners who lifted shells as though they were weights, helping to improve their speed.

In 1948 he became Britain's first national weightlifting coach and moved down from Kirkcaldy to Wood Green in east London. He was only paid by the government for three years, but Murray continued as national coach on a voluntary basis, and quickly became an adviser on strength training to other sports such as athletics and swimming.

As Head Coach he oversaw Great Britain’s most successful period of Olympic success with medals for Jim Halliday, Julien Creus and Louis Martin.

Murray retired from his coaching role in 1972 and was succeeded by John Lear although he continued to offer words of wisdom and advice from time to time.  He passed away in 1998 at the age of 82.

 

 

Ernie
Peppiatt

  • European Champion
  • Olympian (Best Finish 15th)
  • World & Commonwealth Competitor
  • GB & England Coach

Ernie Peppiatt was a European Weightlifting Champion and GB International during the late 40s.

Having served in the Royal Navy during World War II, Ernie Peppiatt resumed his weightlifting career after the hostilities, and won the British middleweight title in 1945.

He competed in the 1948 London Olympics, finishing 15th, and the following year won the middleweight gold medal at the European Championships.

He also competed in the 1949 World Championships but failed to medal and, at the 1950 British Empire Games, was forced to pull out after two lifts because of a shoulder injury he received while training for the Games.

Peppiatt was a member of the Kentish Town Weightlifting Club, one of the leading club’s in Britain at the time, and he eventually became a coach there.

He helped coach the England squad at the 1962 Commonwealth Games and was part of the Great Britain backroom staff for the 1964 Olympics in Tokyo.

His daughter Janet showed promise as a lifter at the age of three, when she lifted 15lb (6.8kg). Peppiatt later emigrated to New Zealand, where he died in 1979.

 

Jim
Halliday

  • Olympic Medallist (Bronze)
  • European Champion
  • 2x Commonwealth Champion
  • British Record Holder 

James ‘Jumping Jim’ Halliday became a leading weightlifter after twice overcoming adversity to win two Commonwealth titles, a European Championship & Olympic Medal.

As a child, he was told he would never be able to take part in any physical exercise because it was believed his father had passed on a congenital heart condition to his son.

That was only until another doctor said that exercise was the best thing for Jim’s health, and he then enjoyed playing football before discovering boxing, gymnastics, wrestling, and then weightlifting

At the age of 15 he was a natural lifter and three years later was the Lancashire lightweight champion.

Halliday joined the Army at the outbreak of World War II, and was involved in the evacuation of Dunkirk before being posted to the Far East, where he became a Japanese prisoner-of-war and was forced to work on the Japanese Death Railway.

When he was released in 1946 Halliday weighed just six stone.  He soon put his weight back on and returned to weightlifting.

Just two years after leaving the POW camp, Halliday was captain of the British weightlifting team at the 1948 London Olympics where he won a lightweight bronze medal.

He further delighted the crowd with his routine of jumping over the bar after completing his lift, which earned him the nickname “Jumping Jim”.

Halliday also won a Gold medal at the European Championships in London.

 He went on to win lightweight gold medal at the 1954 British Empire Games and the middleweight title four years later.

In later life, Halliday became the chief safety officer with the Electricity Board.

 

 

Julien
Creus

  • Olympic Medallist (Silver)
  • European Champion
  • 2x World Championships Medallist 
  • Commonwealth Games Medallist 

    Julian Creus was a medal machine who won Olympic Silver, double World Championship bronze as well as racking up a continental title & a pair of second places at the European Championships and a runners-up medal for England medal at the British Empire Games.

    Creus was a dock worker from the Huyton district of Liverpool. He stood at just over 5-feet tall, but his achievements defied his frame

    He held World and British Empire records for the snatch in the bantamweight division, and was also the holder of six British records.

    Born in 1917, Creus took up weightlifting at the age of 17, after recovering from a rooftop fall that left him with two broken legs.

     He was originally a member of the Bootle Weightlifting Club and, 14 years after taking up the sport, was the 1948 Olympic bantamweight silver medallist after winning the European title earlier in the year.

    By 1950 he was lifting in the featherweight division, and that year won a European and Empire Games silver medal and a bronze at the World Championships. He repeated that continental success the following year and went on to compete in a second Olympics.

     Despite lifting with a broken bone in his foot, received in a dockside accident in Liverpool, he finished ninth at Helsinki in the featherweight class. Creus retired from the sport in 1954 but made a stunning return two years later when he won another British title at the age of 39.

    It earned him a call-up for the 1956 Melbourne Olympics where he finished 11th.

    Creus fell in love with Australia, and he decided to emigrate there with his wife and six of their children in December 1960.

     He went to the 1970 Commonwealth Games in Edinburgh as an advisor, and was asked by the Australians to lift for them while there. He was 53 at the time, and declined.

     

Oscar
State
OBE

  • BAWLA General Sec (1946-1950)
  • IWF General Sec (1960-1974)
  • BAWLA Coaching Scheme Creator
  • Introduced Global Ranking Lists

    Oscar State was a BAWLA General Secretary from 1946-1950 and also held the same post at the IWF form 1960-1974.

    State was a teacher having graduated from Goldsmiths College in London and Carnegie Physical Education College in Leeds.

    During World War II, he was a sports officer in the RAF and was responsible for the physical training of over 7,000 airmen.

    After the war, he became General Secretary of the British Amateur Weightlifters Association (BAWLA).

     He helped organise the weightlifting competition for the 1948 London Olympic Games and was instrumental in developing the BWLA Coaching Scheme.

    Due to his efforts that the Association appointed its first full-time National Coach Al Murray.

     

Maurice
Megennis

  • Commonwealth Champion
  • European Medallist
  • 2x Olympian
  • World Competitor (Best Finish 9th)

Maurice Megennis took up weightlifting shortly after leaving school in Middleton, Leeds, and one of his first coaches was the former champion, and fellow Leeds man, Nat Thewlis.

Not only did Megennis go on to win many regional and national titles, including the British bantamweight title three years in succession 1949-51, he was also victorious on the international stage.

Despite not medaling at the 1950 British Empire and Commonwealth Games, and two Olympics (1952 and 1956), Megennis won the silver medal at the 1952 European Championships in Helsinki.

Two years later, he was the British Empire and Commonwealth Games bantamweight champion, when he was one of four Englishmen to win gold medals on the opening day of the Games (teammate Jim Halliday was another).

Also in 1954, Megennis competed as a featherweight in the World Championships at Wien and finished ninth. 

Megennis was an electrician by trade, and did his national service in the early 1950’s in the physical education branch of the RAF, stationed at RAF Melksham in Wiltshire. He passed away in 2020 at the age of 90. 

 

Joseph
Melville
Barnet

  • World Medallist
  • 3x European Medallist
  • Commonwealth Medallist
  • Olympian (DNF)

During the 1950’s Joseph 'Mel' Barnet medalled at all the major events bar the Olympics, standing on the podium at the European Championships, World Championships & Commonwealth Games.

He represented Great Britain at the 1952 Summer Olympics but failed to record a total.

However, Barnet was a three-times European silver medallist, taking the second spot in 1950, 1951 & 1954.

He represented England in the -90kg Combined division at the 1954 British Empire and Commonwealth Games in Vancouver, Canada and won a Bronze medal.

Four years later he represented Wales in the -90kg Combined division at the 1958 British Empire and Commonwealth Games in Cardiff, Wales and finished 6th.

 

David
Harfield

  • BAWLA Treasurer (1954-2002)
  • BWLA Assistant Sec (1965-2002)
  • IWF Assistant Sec (1960-1962)
  • Five decades of involvement

David Harfield contributed 50 years of service to British Weightlifting in leadership and financial roles. 

Harfield joined the governing body of the BWLA in 1952. He became Treasurer in 1954 and Assistant Secretary in 1965. He served in this joint capacity until his retirement in 2002, a milestone of fifty years continuous service. During that period he co-authored many publications and books on the sport.

He also had a brief spell as IWF Assistant Secretary 1960 – 1962, but had to relinquish the position due to inability to get time off his full-time job.

An officer of the UK Sport stated “In the nearly 30 years I worked for the Sports Council and UK Sport I can honestly say that I have come across few, if any, individuals who have contributed so much in a voluntary capacity to their sport as David Harfield. In addition, he is a thoroughly decent and modest man who has sought no accolades for his contribution.”

 

Phil
Caira

  • 2x Commonwealth Champion
  • 5x Commonwealth Appearances 
  • 2x Olympian (Best Finish 5th)
  • 'Moscow Prize' International  Medallist

    Phil Caira represented Scotland at five Commonwealth Games between 1954 and 1970 and was crowned a champion twice.

    While still a pupil at Kirkcaldy High School he won Scottish and British senior titles, earning him the nickname ‘Scotland’s Wonder Boy’.

    He recorded a top-five finish on his Commonwealth debut in 1954, and repeated the position at the Olympics one year later for Great Britain.

    Caira competed in international events around the world.

    He won a Silver Medal at the Moscow Prize competition in Russia before going on to win Commonwealth Gold in 1958.

    He had retired following the Games due to a knee injury but was persuaded to make a comeback for the 1960 Rome Olympics where he finished 15th.

    He returns for the 1962 Games where he won gold for the second time. That result made him Scotland’s most successful Commonwealth Games weightlifter to date.  Caira failed to record a total at the 1966 Commonwealth Games, but finished 10th on his swansong four years later.

     

Louis
Martin
MBE

  • 4x World Champion
  • 4x European Champion
  • 3x Commonwealth Champion
  • 2x Olympic Medallist ( Silver & Bronze)

The magnificent Louis Martin is often regarded as the greatest British weightlifter of all-time with a record that includes Four World Titles, Four European Championships, Three Commonwealth Games and two Olympic medals.

He was born in Kingston, Jamaica, in 1935 and moved to the UK in the mid-1950s as part of the Windrush generation.

He eventually settled in Derby where he started specialising in weightlifting.

Martin represented Jamaica at Commonwealth level in 1958 but failed to total.

The following year he switched allegiances to Great Britain and won his first World Title by defeating Soviet Olympic Gold medallist Arkady Vorobyov.

Between 1960 and 1965 Martin racked up another three World Championships (62,63, & 65)  and finished runner-up twice (61, & 64).

On the continental scene, it was a similar story as in that same period Martin entered five European events and emerged victorious in four.

During those dominant displays he represented Great Britain at Rome in 1960 where he brought home bronze and four years later, he went one better and took silver in Tokyo.

He took a third Gold medal for Team England in Edinburgh 1970 to go alongside his Perth 62 and Kingston 66 triumphs.

When he wed local Derby girl Ann Robinson in 1964 it was one of the first highly publicised mixed-race marriages in the UK and he featured on the front cover of The Sunday Times supplement.

The following year Martin earned an MBE from the Queen for services to weightlifting and was an official flagbearer for Team England in 66.

After he retired, Martin eventually set up a series of gyms where he helped train the next generation of talented lifters. In 2012 he carried the Olympic torch on its tour of the UK ahead of the London Olympics.

Louis with Sir Ben Helgott (3x Maccabiah Champ ) &  Dave Morgan (5x Commonwealth Champ) at the BWL Centenary event in 2011.

Sir
Ben
Helfgott

  • 3x Maccabi Games Champion
  • 2x GB Olympic Team Captain
  • Commonwealth Medallist 
  • 4x British Champion

    Sir Ben Helfgott is a thee-times Maccabi Games Champion and two-time British Olympic weightlifting Team Captain, who received a Knighthood in 2018 in recognition of his contribution to services to Holocaust remembrance and education.

    Sir Ben was born in Poland on November 22, 1929. He was almost ten years old at the start of the Second World War when the Nazi’s invaded. He was forced to spend his formative years as a slave labourer, in a ghetto, and in several concentration camps.

    In 1942 Sir Ben’s mother and younger sister were taken out to the woods and shot dead. After surviving the Buchenwald concentration camp, he found out that his father had also been shot and killed few days before the end of the war. Sir Ben was liberated from Theresienstadt and brought to England at the age of 15 describing himself as “a walking skeleton”.

    After taking up weightlifting in the UK he won three Gold medals representing Great Britain at the Maccabiah Games in the lightweight division, triumphing in 1950, 1953, and 1957, and also secured Bronze for England at the 1958 Commonwealth Games in Cardiff.

    Sir Ben was appointed captain of the British Olympic weightlifting team in 1956 for the Melbourne Olympics and then achieved the same feat four years later in Rome lifting alongside four-time World Champion Louis Martin.  Sir Ben won four British Senior titles throughout his career.

    At the London 2012 Olympic Games, Sir Ben provided motivation and support to many young weightlifters including future Commonwealth Games Champion Zoe Smith.

    In 2018, he was appointed a Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire in recognition of his contribution to services to Holocaust remembrance and education.

    In 2020 he was inducted into the Jewish Sport's Hall of Fame and was presented with a Pride of Britain Award by Stephen Fry in honour of his “quiet determination to ensure that the unspeakable wickedness and evil” of the Holocaust is never forgotten.

     

Precious
McKenzie
MBE

  • 4x Commonwealth Champion
  • EEC / EU Champion
  • 3x Olympian
  • South African Sports Hall of Fame

     Precious ‘The Pocket Rocket’ McKenzie won four Commonwealth Games titles & represented Great Britain at three Olympic Games.

    Born in Durban, South Africa, in 1936 McKenzie left the country after they refused to pick him for the Empire Games and Olympics because of the country's apartheid policy. 

    He was once famously photographed holding Muhammed Ali on his shoulders.

    Legend has it that the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh were late for an official engagement at the 1974 Commonwealth Games in Christchurch because she wanted to watch Precious McKenzie win his third consecutive gold medal in weightlifting.

    He won a Gold Medal at the European Communities Championship the following year which helped Great Britain secured third in the medal table.

     As a result of contacts made at Christchurch, New Zealand, he decided to emigrate to the county country, where he was offered the opportunity to be a weight trainer in a gym. He settled in Auckland and won his fourth Commonwealth gold representing New Zealand at the age of 42 at the 1978 Commonwealth Games in Edmonton.

    In 2006 he was recognised by his birth country with an induction into the South African Sports Hall of Fame.

     

     

George
Newton

  • 3x Commonwealth Champion
  • 4x Commonwealth Medallist
  • 2x Olympian (Best Finish 15th)
  • World Competitor (Best Finish 15th)

George Newton won Commonwealth gold for England in 1962, 1970 and 1974 and silver in 1966.

He was born in then British colony of British Guiana (now independent as Guyana) but after qualifying as an electrician he moved to the UK as part of the Windrush generation.

After arriving he London he joined the Bethnal Green Weightlifting Club and soon set out on an international career that lasted for two decades.

Newton never reached the medal podium at the World or European Championships, but he was conspicuously successful at the Commonwealth Games.

 The 1974 Commonwealth Games in Christchurch in New Zealand proved a major turning point in his life as he met and fell in love with the woman he was to marry after leaving London for New Zealand on New Year’s Day 1975.

By then a veteran of 42 he made a final Commonwealth Games in the singlet for his new country of residence at the 1978 version in Edmonton, Canada although this time he came home without a medal after failing to record a valid lift.

 He retired from competitive lifting shortly afterwards but stayed connected to the sport by coaching.

 One of his charges, Lee Attrill, went on to follow Newton and compete at the Commonwealth Games.

 Newton also competed in powerlifting, where he would also help to coach 5-times World Champion Cathy Millen, and in bodybuilding.

 

 

Ralph
Rowe

  • Paralympic Champion
  • 5x Paralympic Medallist
  • 6x Paralympic Appearances 
  • Bill McGowran Trophy Winner

    Ralph Rowe was Great Britain's first black Paralympian. He competed in six Paralympic Games, in three different continents, across 20 years and medalled in five of them.

    Rowe represented Pinderfields Spinal Unit at national level in Paralympic weightlifting, prior to it being replaced by powerlifting following the Barcelona Games in 1992.

    His Paralympic Games debut came back in Tokyo in 1964 where Rowe came away with a bronze medal, but he would improve upon that by picking up silver at the Tel Aviv Games in 1968.

    But it was at the Heidelberg Games in 1972 where Rowe really made his mark, reaching the pinnacle of his sport by claiming the gold medal in the heavyweight category.

    Rowe added another silver to his medal collection when he travelled to Canada four years later for the Toronto Paralympics in 1976.

    His extraordinary success was recognised in 1978 by the Sports Journalists' Association. Rowe was the recipient of the illustrious Bill McGowran Trophy, awarded to a high-achieving athlete with an impairment, an accolade since won by Tanni Grey-Thompson and David Weir.

    Rowe did not medal at the Arnhem Games in 1980. But he picked up the third silver of his career in 1984, when Stoke Mandeville - widely regarded as the birthplace of competitive para-sport - hosted the Paralympic events for wheelchair athletes with spinal cord injuries.

     

Mike
Pearman

  • 2x Commonwealth Medallist
  • 3x Olympian
  • GB Head Coach 2001 World Champs
  • England Head Coach Glasgow 2014

Mike Pearman is a three-times Olympian and two times Commonwealth Medallist who has over 60 years’ experience in the sport as an athlete and coach.

Early in his career while training Pearman worked as a lady’s hair stylist while being trained by GB Head Coach Al Murray.

He competed in the Men’s Middleweight Division at Tokyo 1964 and finished 14th. He moved up to the Light Heavyweight Division four years later and finished 14th again.

In 1972 Pearman remained at Light-Heavyweight and improved to place 11th in Munich.

Pearman won Bronze medals for England at the 1966 and 1974 Commonwealth Games.  In 1974 he also finished 10th at the World Championships.

He was Great Britain’s Head Coach at the 2001 World Championships and Head England Coach at the 2014 Commonwealth Games.  He won the Jon Lear Outstanding Contribution award for 2020.

 

John
Redgewick

  • Paralympic Champion
  • Won Gold on his debut  via a tiebreak
  • First Champion for GB in the Sport
  • Beat the Legendary Michael Dow

John Redgwick won Paralympic Gold on his debut at Tokyo in 1964.

He competed in the Men’s Featherweight Weightlifting division and became champion after a closely fought contest with the legendary 4x multi-sport medallist Michael Dow of Australia.

Both lifted 95kg, but Redgwick took the title on a tiebreak. The image shows Dow competing while Redgwick is among the audience in the front row eagerly soaking in the spectacular showdown.

The pair finished ahead of Argentina’s Hector Brandoni and O’Murphy of Ireland.

Redgewick also took part in athletics events in Tokyo as well.

 

Wally
Holland
OBE

  • BAWLA General Sec (1965-1999)
  • BAWLA Olympic Manager (1968-1992)
  • IWF Assistant Sec (1976-184)
  • EWF President (1987-1999)

Walter ‘Wally’ Holland was the General Secretary of the BWLA for 35 years and held many international positions within the word of weightlifting

He initially made his fortune as an optician but used them resources to contribute heavily to the success of weightlifting within the UK by fulfilling the role of British Olympic team manager from 1968 to 1992 and General Secretary of the British Amateur Weightlifters’ Association from 1965 to 1999.

After serving as Assistant Secretary of the IWF, from 1976 to 1984 he was Executive Member, 1984-1988 Vice President of the IWF.

He was the President of the European Weightlifting Federation from 1987 to 1999. An emblematic figure in weightlifting, known to all as “Wally”, Mr. Holland became a Member of the Weightlifting Hall of Fame in 1995.

His wit, humour and vitality which he kept for a very long time, well into his 80s, made him a popular and beloved figure all around the world. His great services to his country were rewarded by HM the Queen by the OBE title.

He passed away in 2011 aged 93.

 

John
Lear

  • GB Head Coach 1972-2002
  • 8x Olympics Attended
  • 10x Commonwealth Games
  • British Olympic Committee Member 

John Lear was the British National Coach for an unprecedented 40 years, coaching at multiple Olympic and Commonwealth Games, whilst playing  a key role in the development and success of the sport and the National Governing Body.

John, who was nearly 85 when he finally lost his battle against a long illness, qualified as a PE teacher after National Service and having represented England internationally,  dedicated the rest of his life to the sport he loved.

 After coaching both the Iranian and South Korean weightlifting teams in the 1960s he was appointed British National Coach in 1972 taking over from his retiring mentor Al Murray. 

He was at the vanguard of the professionalisation of British Sport and his foresight, wisdom and experience was constantly in demand at the British Olympic Association where he served on numerous performance and team management committees.

 He was part of Team GB at no less than eight consecutive Olympic Games and Team England at ten consecutive Commonwealth Games. He also represented his sport on the National Olympic Committee for at least two decades.

 

Tom
Palmer

  • Paralympic Champion
  • 2x Paralympic Medallist
  • Silver on his debut at Tokyo 1964
  • Gold at Tel-Aviv 1968

Tom Palmer was Paralympic Gold and Silver Medallist.

At Japan 1964 he won Silver on his Paralympic Games debut in the Paralympic Weightlifting Middleweight Category lifting 140kg.

Palmer went on to become champion four years in Tel-Aviv Israel. He once again competed as a Middleweight, but managed to add 12.5kg to his previous benchmark.

His lift of 152.5kg was enough for him to see off France's Brifoulliere & Jensen of the USA who both finished 2.5kg adrift.

As well as Paralympic Weightlifting he also competed in Athletics & Basketball.

Myrddin
John
MBE

  • Welsh Weightlifting Sec (1966-2013)
  • Commonwealth Competitor in 58
  • Former IWF Vice President
  • 11 Olympic Games attended

Myrddin John was General Secretary of Weightlifting Wales from 1966 to 2013.

As an athlete he competed as a weightlifter at the 1958 British Empire and Commonwealth Games.

In his Wales role he served as a coach, manager, and chef de mission, attending 11 Commonwealth and 11 Olympic Games in various capacities before retiring.

He was the Commonwealth Games Council Chief 1982-2005 and had also served as IWF Vice President& CWF Vice President.

He was awarded an MBE by the Queen in 1983 for his services to sport.

David
Pickering

  • Paralympic Medallist
  • Won Bronze at Tokyo 64
  • Also Medalled in Club Throw
  • Multi-Sport athlete

David Pickering won a Bronze Para Weightlifting medal at the Tokyo 1964 Paralympic Games.  

He lifted 130kg in the Men’s Middleweight event to round off the podium.

He also competed in athletics in Tokyo and won a Silver medal in the men’s club throw B event.

 

John
McNiven
MBE

  • 2x Commonwealth Medallist
  • 6x Commonwealth Appearances
  • 25x Scottish National Champion
  • 18x World Master's Champion

John McNiven MBE competed at six Commonwealth Games in the 56kg category, winning two bronze for medals for Scotland.

He made his Commonwealth debut in 1966 with a seventh place in Kingston. 

McNiven then went on to win Bronze at the 1970 & 1974 editions.

During his career McNiven won twenty-five Scottish National championships.

He has also competed in 18 World Masters events, winning Gold in 14 of them.

McNiven was the first weightlifter to receive the World Masters Hall of Fame Award in 1993.

He was awarded an MBE in 1993 for services to the sport of Weightlifting and was inducted into the Scottish Sports Hall of Fame in 2003.

 Today he still remains an active technical official, often sitting on the Jury at British Championships.

 

John
Burns

  • 2x Commonwealth Champion
  • 2x Olympian (Best Finish 11th)
  • World Senior's Competitor 
  • European Senior's Competitor 

John Burns won Gold for Wales at the Commonwealth Games twice during his career.

Born and raised in Port Talbot, his gym in Swansea became famous for physical activity for more than 30 years.

His lifting career saw him compete at European and World Championships as well as Commonwealth and Olympic Games.

 He won countless Welsh and British titles, broke records and went to two Olympic Games.

Having competed for Team GB at the 1976 Olympics, he notched his first gold medal at the 1978 Commonwealth Games in the sub-heavyweight division.

He went to Moscow with the 1980 British Olympic team and then struck gold again in 1982 at the Brisbane Commonwealth Games in the heavyweight category.

Before becoming a pillar of the establishment in Swansea, Burns used to be a more than useful ‘door attendant’ at some of the best night spots in the city.

Legend has it that prior to the 1978 Games he was called upon to move a Mercedes Benz car in the car park to end a disagreement. He lifted the car out of the way, but managed to rupture his bicep in the process.

He battled through the pain barrier to get fit in time to take the gold medal in Edmonton. Burns entered the Britain’s Strongest Man in 1983 and finished third.

 

Ian
Thomson

  • WL Scotland Secretary (1979-1994)
  • BWLA Chief Technical Officer
  • Organised 86 Commonwealth Games
  • EWF Committee Member 

Ian Thomson was the Weightlifting Scotland Secretary from 1979-1994.

He was instrumental in bringing to Scotland it’s first British senior championship event, and ensured it was so efficiently organised that at one point it became a biennial fixture.

He helped organise the World Junior’s in 85 & the Commonwealth Games in 86. Thomson managed UK and Scottish teams and was chief technical officer for the British Weight Lifters Association.

He was elected to the European Weightlifting Committee a week before passing away at the age of 51 from cancer.

 

Alper
Ali

  • Paralympic Medallist
  • 3x Paralympian 
  • Manchester 2002 Technical Official 
  • BDPLA Founder 

Alper Ali represented Great Britain at 3 Paralympics and won Bronze on his debut at New York 1984.

Early in his career he was founding member of the Shark’s Swim club and  in 1982 completed a team channel swim from England to France and back again

In his first Olympics Ali lifted 100kg in the Men’s Men's -65 kg Integrated weightlifting division to round off the podium.

Four years later in Seoul he finished in 7th place in the 67.5kg class.  In the early 1990’s, Ali formed the British Disabled Power Lifters Association.

 In his final Olympic appearance in 1992 Ali finished in 11th place.

He was a referee at the 2002 Commonwealth Games alongside his wife Rosemary.

 

Brian
Stones

  • Paralympic Champion
  • 3x Paralympian
  • 4th on his Paralympics Debut
  • Gold at Stoke Mandeville & NY 84

Brian Stones is three times Paralympian who won Paralympic Gold Medallist at the 1984 Games.

Stones made his Paralympic debut at the Arnhem 1980 Paralympic Games producing a 4th place finish.

In 1984 he lifted 142.5kg to lead home a Great Britain 1-2 finish in the Men's 57 kg Para Weightlifting event finishing ahead of fellow countryman Chris Wood.

 At Seoul four years later, he finished 8th in the same category.

 

Fred
McKenzie

  • 2x Paralympic Medallist
  • GB Para Powerlifting Coach 92-00
  • Manchester 2002 Technical Official 
  • Coaching Secretary BPF

Fred McKenzie took part in two Paralympic Games, winning two medals.

He has been involved in the sport for 65 years and opened his first gym at the age of 18 in Newbiggin By Sea.

At New York in 1984 McKenzie won a Bronze medal for Great Britain in the 85kg integrated class and he repeated the result four years later in Seoul after moving into the 90kg category.

He was the Para Powerlifting Team Manager and Coach from 1992 to 2000 and refereed at the 2002 Commonwealth Games in Manchester.

McKenzie currently serves as coaching secretary at the British Powerlifting Federation.

 

Tony
Griffin
BEM

  • Paralympic Medallist
  • 38 International Medals
  • London 2012 Torch Carrier
  • BEM for Services to Sport

Anthony ‘Tony’ Griffin was medallist across multiple sports at the 1984 Paralympics including Para Powerlifting.

He competed in the Men’s Powerlifting -52kg class and secured Silver lifting 45kg.  Gold went to Alfred Dore of the USA.

That year he also competed in other Paralympic events and won Gold in both the Men’s Javelin and Club Throw events setting world records in each discipline.

In the 1970s and ‘80s, Tony won a total of 38 international medals across various events in a career that saw him become an icon in disability sports.

At London 2012 he carried the Olympic Torch in the run-up to the games and was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Science in 2015 by the University of Bolton for his Sporting and Community achievements

 In 2019 he received a British Empire Medal from the Queen for services to Sport, to Charity and to the community in Bolton.

 

Anthony
Bishop

  • Paralympic Champion
  • 2x Paralympic Medallist
  • Gold at Seoul 88
  • Silver at Stoke Mandeville & NY 84

Anthony Bishop is a two-times Paralympic medallist. He won Silver in 1984 at the Stoke Mandeville & New York Games before going on to clinch Gold at Seoul 88 four years later.

Bishop competed in Paralympic Weightlifting on his debut at the 1984 Olympics in the 95kg integrated class.

 He lifted 145kg to finish on the second step of the podium behind Sweden’s Arne Karlsson who lifted 175kg.

 

Keith
Bell

  • Paralympic Medallist
  • European Champion
  • European Record Holder
  • British Champion

Keith Bell is a Paralympic Medallist and a former British, and European Champion.

Bell won a bronze medal at the 1984 Paralympics in Los Angeles, lifting 95 kilos.

Four years later at the European Championships in Sweden, he lifted 135 kilos, a European record at the time for people with cerebral palsy.

During the last two decades Bell was worked as a gym instructor and sports masseur for people living with specific health conditions and disabilities.

 One of his facilities, The Broome Manor Golf Complex, was nominated for a National Fitness award in 2013.

John&
Joyce
Sheard

  • IPC Technical Officials for Two Decades
  • BWL Technical Officials (1991 - Present)
  • BWL Volunteers (1983- Present)
  • Wheel Power Volunteers (1980 - Present)

In 2020 John & Joyce Sheard were honoured with the Louis Martin lifetime achievement award, named after the late 4x World Weightlifting Champion, for their service to the UK Para Powerlifting community.

Since 1980 they have volunteered for the Wheel Power charity by helping at the iconic Stoke Mandeville Stadium. After a couple of years of service, they were invited to join the British Weightlifting Association for the Disabled (BWAD) serving in various administrative capacities.

In the early 90’s they became licensed technical officials and have since travelled across the globe officiating at numerous international events, Commonwealth Games and Paralympics. In 2021 they retired from international events and received a signed letter each from IPC President Andrew Parsons

Domestically they have been an integral pillar for para powerlifting by assisting BWL events at all levels across the country and the sport would not be in the place it is today without their hard work and dedication. 

 

Chris
Wood

  • Paralympic Medallist
  • 2x Paralympian
  • 6th on his debut in 1980 
  • Won Silver in 1984

Chris Wood is a two-times Paralympian who won a Silver medal at the 1984 Paralympics.

He finished 6th on his Paralympic debut in 1980 and medalled four years later in New York.  

He finished second behind GB teammate Brian Stones.

 

 

David
Mercer

  • Olympic Medallist (Bronze)
  • World Medallist
  • Commonwealth Medallist
  • EEC / EU Champion

David Mercer was the last British weightlifter to medal at the Olympic Games when he stood on the podium in Los Angeles in 1984.

The Salford born lifter was able to successfully capitalise on the Eastern bloc boycott to clinch a bronze medal in the 90kg class on American soil.

Mercer lifted a total of 353.5kg to take third position after fending off a three-way challenge from West Germany’s Peter Immesberger, Greece’s  Nikos Iliadis and Hwang U-Won of South Korea.

All three would finish just behind Mercer on 350kg. U-Won produced a superior clean and jerk, but Mercer’s strong snatch performance ultimately secured him the final position on the rostrum.

The top two spots were taken up by the Romanian Middle-Heavyweight duo of Nico Vlad and Peter Dumitru.

The event was also recognised as that year’s World Championship. Only total medals counted for Olympic Games while Snatch and Clean & Jerk medals were used for the World Weightlifting Championships, so Mercer bagged another Bronze.

Four years later in Seoul, South Korea, Mercer meanwhile faced an uphill challenge to retain his position with the return of the boycotting nations.

Despite clinching a Commonwealth silver medal for England in the lead up to the 1988 event, he was up against eventual five-time World Champion Anatoly Khrapaty of the Soviet Union.

However, he was still able to secure a strong 6th and was the best of the rest in his group after the returning nations.

 

David
Morgan
MBE

  • 5x Commonwealth Champion
  • 6x Commonwealth Medallist (12 in total)
  • 3x Olympian (Best Finish 4th x2)
  • World Championship Medallist

David Morgan is the only athlete in Commonwealth Games history to have been a champion at five different games – taking gold in 1982, 1986, 1990, 1994 and 2002. He also won Silver in 1998 making the only male athlete to medal at six games.

Morgan's Commonwealth career also coincided with the period where medals were award in the snatch & clean & jerk taking his total medal tally to twelve (nine gold and three silver)

He was instantly successful on his Commonwealth debut for Wales, becoming the youngest ever athlete to take Commonwealth Gold at the age of 17.

Competing in the lightweight class, he achieved 132.5 kg in the snatch and 162.5 kg in the clean and jerk to defeat former champion Basil (Bill) Stellios of Australia.

Morgan recorded his best attempt in the snatch at the 1984 Junior World Championships, with a lift of 150 kg which gave him the gold in the snatch in the 75 kg class.

He then went on to finish second overall after a clean and jerk of 180kg. This was the first time in 27 years that a British Weightlifter had won a gold medal in a world championship event. 

He placed fourth overall in the Summer Olympics in the same year at the height of the Eastern Bloc boycott.

Snatch and clean & jerk results counted for World Medals, so Morgan picked up Bronze in the latter.

More impressively he maintained his fourth position at the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul despite suffering from dysentery and having to face off against the returning nations.

Morgan won five European Communities Championships through the 90s.

He was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in the 2020 New Year Honours for services to weightlifting

 

Russell
Willey

  • 2x World Champion
  • 4th at the Paralympics 
  • 6x Paralympic Appearances
  • Para Powerlifting Technical Official

Russell Willey is a two-times World Champion who represented Great Britain in Para Powerlifting in 5 Paralympic Games before a sixth appearance in Winter Sports.

Willey was born in spina bifida, a deformity of the back. He entered his first Welsh competition in 1981 and won it outright.

He missed the next two British Championships due to exam clashes but was selected to represent Great Britain at an international event in Sweden.

When Willey was finally able to compete in the British nationals, he instantly became the British Champion in 1983.

He won the World Championships in 1986 & 1990 and finished 4th at Barcelona in the 1992. In 2006 he competed at the Winter Paralympic Games.

Willey is currently a technical official at national Para Powerlifting competitions

 

Marie
Forteath

  • European Champion
  • World C&J Medallist
  • European Record Holder
  • GB International 

Marie Forteath was a European Champion & World Medallist in the late eighties.

She secured a silver in the clean & jerk at the inaugural Women’s World Championship event in 1987 held in Daytona.

She snatched 57.5kg and then clean & jerked 80kg to finish with a total of 137.5 which secured her 5th position overall in the 56kg class.

The following year she held the European Snatch, Clean & Jerk, and total records after a strong performance in San Marino saw her crowned the 56kg continental champion.

 

Pauline
Haughton

  • European Champion
  • European Medallist
  • World Medallist
  • 2x EEC / EU Champion

Pauline Haunton was among the early pioneers for women’s weightlifting. She was a European Champion & a World Medallist.

In 1988 Haunton won the European 52kg title in a tiebreak after a tightly contested affair with Spain’s Sandra Gomez & Edina Jung of Hungary.

All three lifted 135kg in total, but Haunton came out on top when bodyweight was taken into account.

Two years later she won a Silver medal in the same event.

Haunton won Bronze across the board at the World Championships later that year in the 52kg category. She snatched 67.5kg and clean & jerked 82.5kg to produce a total of 150kg.

 

Jeanette
Rose

  • European Champion
  • 2x EEC / EU Champion
  • World Championship Medallist
  • Multiple European Medallist

Jeanette Rose was a European Champion who would accumulate 10 continental medals in her career when counting medals won in the the snatch and clean & jerk.

Rose won World Championship Bronze representing in 1988 with a total of 188kg.

In 1990 Rose clinched Silver in the 67.5kg class at the European Championships lifting a total of 177.5kg

She won the competition outright the following year increasing her total to 192.5kg She picked up another Silver the following year.

Rose also won two European Communities Championships

 

Judy
Oakes
OBE

  • 2x European Champion
  • 2x ECC/ EU Champion
  • World Medallist
  • 6x Commonwealth Medallist (Shotput)

Judy Oakes won two European Weightlifting titles for Great Britain & was a World medallist.

In 1987 Oakes won a clean & jerk bronze medal at the first Women’s World Championships in Daytona.

Two years later she secured Bronze in the snatch & finished third overall.

 She also won the European Championship in 1989 as well and repeated the feat again in 1990.

With women’s weightlifting not being on the Olympic & Commonwealth programme in the 20th century she competed in shotput.

Oakes represented England at six Commonwealth Games between 1978-1998 and medalled at every one, winning three Gold, two Silver & one Bronze.

Oakes also represented Great Britain at four Olympics in shotput.

She was given an OBE by the Queen in 1999.

Mrtyle
Augee
MBE

  • 2x European Champion
  • 4x EEC / EU Champion
  • World Championship Medallist
  • Commonwealth Medallist (Shotput)

Myrtle Augee’s is a two-time European Senior Weightlifting Champion, who won 8 continental championship medals across the disciplines.

She clinched four consecutive EU titles and took third overall at the World Championships in 1994.

Augee was also the last British weightlifter to win a World Championship medal until Emily Muskett secured clean and jerk bronze at Pattaya last year.

On February 4, 1965  Myrtle Sharon Mary Augee was born in Greenwich, Greater London .

She competed in shotput at the Commonwealth Games alongside fellow Great Britain weightlifting compatriot Judy Oaks. 

Over the course of her career, Augee made five appearances for England between 1986-2002 and won 4 medals including Gold in Auckland 1990. The London lifter also represented Great Britain in the 1988 Summer Olympics and 1992 Summer Olympics.

Augee’s maiden European Weightlifting title success came in the 1993 European Championships which was held in Valencia Spain.

She snatched 85kg to tie with second and third place at the interval then clean & jerked 115kg for a total of 200kg to come through and take the overall win.

That same year she won her first European Communities Championship, kickstarting a run of four titles in a row.

In 1994 she added 12kg to her European Seniors total in Rome, Italy, but had to settle for Silver overall behind Ukraine’s Lubov Grigurko.

She bounced back a year later at Beersheba, Israel to reclaim the continental crown adding a further 2.5kg to her total.

Augee also had success in powerlifting where she won numerous titles at National, European and World events.

In 2009 she was awarded an MBE for her work as an officer at HM Prison Pentonville.

 

Andrew
Davies

  • Commonwealth Champion
  • 1x World Medallist (3 in total)
  • 1x European Medallist (3 in total)
  • GB Coach 2008 Olympics

Andrew Davies was one of the greatest lifters of the late eighties medalling at the World and European Championships before going on to become Commonwealth Champion.

Davies represented Wales at the 1986 Commonwealth Games and picked a Bronze medal on his debut.

 Two years later he represented Great Britain at the Seoul Olympics but was unable to set a total. 

For 1990 he switched his Commonwealth allegiance to England and won Gold.

Davies qualified for the 1992 Olympics but was sent home along with fellow lifter Andrew Saxton before having a chance to compete.

After widespread front page media coverage the pair were exonerated of all wrongdoing in a subsequent BAWLA Tribunal after an independent  investigation. 

 He later coached Michaela Breeze at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.

 

Maggie
Lynes

  • EEC / EU Champion
  • 2x European Medallist (6 in total)
  • Commonwealth Competitor
  • England Team Manager 2010 & 2014

Maggie Lynes was one of the pioneers of women's competitive weightlifting.

She was a triple gold medallist at the first EEC weightlifting championships and went on to win a total of six European Championship medals, including two Gold medals in the Clean and Jerk.

She narrowly missed a medal in the Clean and Jerk at the 1989 World championships, finishing fourth by virtue of a slightly heavier body-weight.

Lynes went on to compete for England in weightlifting at the 2002 Commonwealth Games where she finished 6th, becoming the first English athlete to compete in two different sports at the Commonwealth Games.

She was served as the England Weight Lifting Team Manager at the 2010 and 2014 Commonwealth Games and currently sits on the BWL England Sub-Committee. 

 

 

Jon
Amos

  • World Medallist (Bronze)
  • Paralympian (Best Finish 6th)
  • GB Para Powerlifting Head Coach (00's)
  • Former IPC Committee Chair

Jon Amos is World Championship Bronze Medallist, Paralympian and GB Para Powerlifting Coach during the Noughties.

Amos represented Great Britain at the Barcelona 1992 Paralympic Games before going on to establish a distinguished career as a coach.

He was head coach and team manager of ParalympicsGB at the Athens 2004 and Beijing 2008 Games, as well coaching Team England at the Manchester 2002 and Melbourne 2006 Commonwealth Games.

During that period he helped guide Emma Brown to her second Olympic Title for Great Britain and Jason Irving to England’s first Para Powerlifting Commonwealth medal.

Amos was South West Sports personality of the year 1993 and awarded Coach of the Year Awards in 2003 by Sports Coach UK in 1997 and 2007 by the British Wheelchair Sports.

He has severed in numerous roles including IPC Para Powerlifting Committee  Chairman,  Trustee/Director of the British Paralympic Association, The British Wheelchair Sports Federation and The English Federation of Disability Sport.

Currently he coaches the Japanese National Team assisting their preparation for Tokyo 2020.

 

Dr
Mike
Irani

  • IWF Interim President (2020-Present)
  • BWL Team Doctor (90's-2020)
  • BWL Board Member (2012-2020)
  • IWF Executive Board Member

Dr Mike Irani has been a British Weight Lifting team doctor for decades, attended dozens of international competitions, and has served on IWF committees before becoming interim IWF President in 2020.

Irani is a Senior Consultant Rheumatologist based in Surrey with 30 years experience. He has attended 8 Olympic and Commonwealth Games with British and Home Nations' squads and was selected as the IOC Medial liaison for the Rio Olympics.

Irani was also BWL Board member from 2012-2020. He relinquished upon becoming IWF President to fully concentrate his focus on the international role.

 

Andrew
Callard
BEM

  • Commonwealth Champion
  • 3x Commonwealth Medallist (5 in total)
  • Olympian (Best Finish 20th)
  • GB & England National Coach

Andrew Callard is Commonwealth Games Champion who has coached numerous successful British Weightlifters at International Events

Callard secured Bronze for England at the 1990 Auckland Commonwealth Games and won Gold four years later.

During that period he also represented Great Britain at the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona.

In 2002, he formed Europa Weightlifting Club, volunteering to give young people an opportunity to get involved in the sport.

Callard helped Zoe Smith become England’s first ever female weightlifting medallist at the Delhi Commonwealth Games in 2010 and at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games 2018 five out of six English weightlifters were from Europa.

He was named coach of the year at the 2014, 2016 & 2018 BWL Annual Achievement Awards and also received a British Empire Medal in 2019 for services to weightlifting.

 

Nicholas
Slater

  • 3x Paralympic Medallist 
  • Multiple European Champion
  • World Record Holder
  • Multiple World Medallist 

Nicholas Slater is a three times Paralympic Medallist & Multiple European Champion

He won Silver at Seoul 88 & Barcelona 92 Olympics.

In 1995, he won Gold in the European Championships to supplement the British titles already won as well as several World medals. One year later he finished 4th at Atlanta 96.

Slater set a new world record at the 1999 European Championships held in Budapest in the 100kg class by lifting an incredible 235 kilograms.

In his final Olympic appearance Slater won a Bronze medal at Sydney 2000.

 

 

Anthony
Peddle

  • Paralympic Champion 
  • 3x Paralympic Medallist
  • 7x Paralympian (GB Record)
  • 2x World Medallist 

Anthony Peddle is the only British athlete in history to compete at seven Paralympics. He won Gold at the 2000 Games in Sydney and a Bronze medal in both the 1992 and 1996 Games.

Peddle took up weightlifting whilst a teenager. At the age of 17 he was selected to compete for the Great Britain team at the 1988 Summer Paralympics at Seoul.

Four years later he won his first Paralympic medal, a bronze in the 52kg weightlifting at Barcelona. In 1994 Peddle won silver at the IPC Powerlifting World Championships in Upsalla in the 48kg category.

He then added a second Paralympic bronze medal at the 1996 Game in Atlanta. He continued his run of medals with another second place at the 1998 IPC Powerlifting World Championships.

At the 2000 Summer Paralympics in Sydney, Peddle set a new world record of 168kg in the -48kg, winning the gold medal in the process. This would be his last major medal though Peddle would go on to compete in three more Paralympics ending his career on home soil at the 2012 Games in London. 

As well as representing Great Britain, Peddle took part in one Commonwealth Games as part of the England team recording an 11th place finish.

 

Emma
Brown

  • 2x Paralympic Champion
  • 2x World Champion
  • 6x European Champion
  • World & Olympic Record Holder

    Emma Brown won Gold medals at the 2000 and 2004 Summer Paralympics. She was also Two-Time World Champion & six times European Champion.

    At the 2000 Summer Paralympics hosted by Sydney, Australia, she lifted 132.5 kg to win the gold medal in the women's up to 82.5 kg event.

    As the sport was making its Games debut, she became the first British woman to win a Paralympic Powerlifting gold medal.

    She competed at her second Paralympics at the 2004 Games held in Athens, Greece. She successfully defended her title in the women's up to 82.5 kg competition; she lifted a total of 130 kg, tied with French lifter Carine Burgy, but won the gold medal based on her lower body weight.

    In addition to her Paralympic Games medals Brown won World Championship gold medals in 1998 and 2002 as well as six European titles in 1995, 1997, 1999, 2001, 2003 and 2005.

    Injury forced her to retire from competitive powerlifting in 2007

     

Natalie
Blake

  • World Medallist
  • Commonwealth Medallist
  • European Medallist
  • 5x Paralympian (Best Finish 4th)

Natalie Blake won medals at the Commonwealth Games, World Championships & European Championships in a career that spanned 20 years.

Having started out as the youngest athlete to compete at the Sydney 2000 Olympics – female Para-Powerlifting’s inaugural competition, Natalie went on to represent her country at five further Paralympics, securing a brilliant 4th place finish at Athens in 2004.

She won Silver medals at the World Championships in Malaysia in 2002 and for England at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.

Having participated in over 80 competitions over her career Natalie has set a number of British records as well as 2 European records.

 

Michaela
Breeze
MBE

  • Commonwealth Champion
  • 4x Commonwealth Medallist (6 in total)
  • European Medallist (3 in total)
  • 2x Olympian (Best Finish 9th)

Michaela Breeze won overall Gold at the 2006 Commonwealth Games and also medalled in 2002, 2010 & 2014. She represented Great Britain at two Olympic Games and won European Bronze in 2003.

Breeze showed immediate promise at international Junior events in 1999 winning the European title in Poland as well as a World Bronze medal in the USA.

Breeze snatched Gold at the 2002 Commonwealth Games in Manchester, but had to settle for Silver overall.

Four years later she claimed the crown outright in Melbourne.

After taking Silver at the 2010 Commonwealth Games, Breeze retired from the sport and opened a gym in Aberdare.

However, she made a comeback for the 2014 Commonwealth Games, motivated by a desire to push athletes she was coaching towards qualifying for the Games themselves.

 Breeze won a bronze medal in the 58 kg competition, setting a new Commonwealth Games snatch record and subsequently announced her second retirement.

 

Ali
Jawad

  • World Champion
  • World Recorder Holder
  • Paralympic Medallist
  • 2x Commonwealth Medallist

Ali Jawad is a World Champion who has also medalled at the Commonwealth Games & Paralympics.

Originally born in Lebanon, Jawad’s talent for powerlifting was discovered back in 2005 when he was just 16 years old.

Jawad won gold at the 2007 Powerlifting European Championships in Greece and became World Junior Champion at the 2008 championships in the United States.

On the eve of his Paralympic debut at Beijing in 2008, Jawad fell ill. He still competed, finishing ninth, but he was later diagnosed with Crohn’s disease.

After finishing fourth at the London 2012 Paralympics and narrowly missing out on a medal, Jawad continued to work hard and was rewarded with his first gold medal and a World record at the Asian Open Championships in Kuala Lumpur, followed by another gold and World record at the 2014 IPC World Championships in Dubai, lifting 190kg.

In 2015 Jawad’s winning run continued, winning another gold medal in the -65kg class at the IPC Powerlifting European Championships in Eger, Hungary, to ensure that he was selected to Paralympics GB as reigning World and European Champion.

Competing in his third Games at Rio 2016, Ali won his first ever Paralympic medal after securing silver in the men’s -59kg category, lifting a best of 190kg to finish second.

Jawad has also represented England at three Commonwealth Games winning Bronze in 2014 and 2018.

 

Zoe
Newson

  • 2x Paralympic Medallist
  • World Medallist
  • Commonwealth Medallist
  • Junior World Champion

Zoe Newson is a double Paralympic bronze medallist and has also medalled at the World Championships.

She began powerlifting at her local club in 2007, before winning her first competition in 2008.

Since then, she has steadily progressed, setting a new personal best almost every year. In 2010 Zoe competed at the IPC Powerlifting World Championships in Kuala Lumpur, finishing first in the junior event and fourth in the seniors. This helped her qualify for the Paralympic Games in London, where she took bronze in the -40kg class.

A change in IPC classifications during 2014 meant the London 2012 bronze medallist was temporarily ruled out of the sport. However, Zoe made her comeback at the 2015 IPC European Championships in Eger, Hungary in stunning style by taking silver with her second press of 90kg.

At Rio 2016 Zoe matched her achievement of London 2012 as she claimed bronze in the -45kg category.

She successfully lifted 102kg to place third behind Nigeria’s silver medallist Latifat Tijani while China’s Paralympic champion Dandan Hu won with a lift of 107kg, later setting a new world record of 108kg in the bonus round.

 

Zoe
Smith

  • Commonwealth Champion
  • 3x Commonwealth Medallist
  • 2x European Medallist (5 in total)
  • 2x Olympian (Best Finish 8th)

Zoe Smith has stood on every step of the podium at the Commonwealth Games representing England and is also a multiple European Medallist.

Starting out as a gymnast, Zoe first participated in weightlifting aged 12 after being asked to make up the numbers for the Greenwich team at the London Youth Games.

 She trained at Europa under Andrew Callard and was named BOA Athlete of the Year in 2008 after winning Gold at the Commonwealth Youth Games. Two years later she became the first English Women to medal at the Commonwealth Games when she won Bronze at the age of 16.

At London 2012 she broke the British clean and jerk record en route to 10th place finish.

Smith followed this feat by winning a spectacular gold medal at Glasgow 2014, but surgery on a dislocated shoulder prevented her from making her second Olympics at Rio 2016.

She made her third Commonwealth Games appearance in 2018 on the Gold Coast and won a Silver medal in the women's 63kg weightlifting event despite a back injury.

Smith has also twice won overall medals at the European Championships taking Bronze in 2014 & 2019. When counting medals in the snatch & clean & jerk she has won a total of five continental senior medals.

 

Emily
Muskett

  • European Champion
  • Commonwealth Champion
  • World C&J Medallist
  • 2x European Medallist (5 in total)

Emily Muskett became Great Britain’s first World Championship Medallist since 1994 when she won Clean & Jerk Bronze in Pattaya in 2019.

It capped off a successful season which saw her clinch Commonwealth Championships Gold in Samoa, win an Arafura Games title in Australia, secure Silver at the European Championships in Georgia and medal at the Tianjin World Cup in China.

Muskett has represented England at three Commonwealth Games. She failed to finish at Delhi 2010, took fifth place in Glasgow 2014 & then went on to take victory outright at the Gold Coast in 2018.

In 2021 Muskett became only the 10th British Weightlifter in history to win overall Gold at a European Senior Championship by taking top spot in her category in Moscow.

 

Emily
Campbell

  • European Champion
  • Commonwealth Medallist
  • Commonwealth Record Holder
  • Sportscover WL of the Year 2020

Emily Campbell made history at Tokyo 2020 by becoming the first British woman to medal in weightlifting at the Olympic Games by securing silver to win Great Britain’s first medal since 1984 where David Mercer took bronze in Los Angeles.


Emily Campbell secures Team GB’s first medal in 37 years with stunning silver

Campbell snatched 122kg to match the British Senior Women’s 87kg+ record and go into the interval in fourth place before hitting a British and Commonwealth Clean and Jerk record of 161kg to seal silver.

Those lifts earned her a total of 283kg which is also a new Commonwealth record.  

Campbell was coached in the session by Stuart Martin, Andrew Callard and Dave Sawyer.

Gold went to China’s Li Wenwen who lifted a new Olympic record of 320kg while bronze went to Sarah Robles of the USA who lifted 282kg.

It is the latest achievement for Campbell who has had a stellar rise through the ranks in recent years after switching sport from Athletics.

Campbell won her first English Senior Championship in Milton Keynes January 2017 after switching sports from Athletics. She would then go on to retain the title in 2018, 2019 and 2021.

The Nottingham based lifter has also enjoyed similar success at British level with a maiden title triumph in 2017 at the Ricoh Arena, in Coventry, followed by two more consecutive wins in the years that followed.

Campbell trains at Atlas gym in Alfreton working with national coach and former lifter Dave Sawyer and Cyril Martin, a coaching veteran with over 60 years’ experience in the sport.

She finished fourth at the 2017 Commonwealth Championships which were held at the Gold Coast, Australia and served as a test event in preparation for the 2018 Commonwealth Games. The following year Campbell returned to the same venue and won bronze for Team England.  

After announcing herself on the international arena with her Commonwealth medal success, Campbell started her Olympic qualification campaign at the World Championships in Ashgabat lifting 248kg to finish fourteenth.

She then won bronze in the Snatch, Clean and Jerk and total disciplines at the 2019 European Championships hitting 260kg, before lifting 255kg to medal at the British International Open in Coventry.

Campbell lifted 267kg at the 2019 World Championships in Pattaya, Thailand to take ninth and her last competition before the Covid-19 pandemic was the Tianjin World Cup where she medalled in the Snatch and finished fourth overall lifting a total of 271kg.

Those performances saw Campbell honoured with the Sportscover Weightlifter of the Year accolade at the latest BWL Annual Achievement Awards. Campbell also currently serves as the Athlete Representative on the British Weight Lifting Board, ensuring that lifters have their voice heard on key governance decisions.

At the 2021 European Championships Campbell became the first British weightlifter to win a clean sweep of golds across all three disciplines at the European Championships since Marie Forteath in 1988.

Hitting six out of six lifts, Campbell snatched 122kg to set a new British record and stormed to gold at the interval. She then managed to produce another British record to win Clean and Jerk gold lifting 154kg for a total of 276kg to wrap up the overall title as well.

The Clean and Jerk performance also ensured she set a new Commonwealth record in that discipline and the overall total, beating the previous benchmarks of 151kg and 275kg set by Samoa’s Feagaiga Stowers in 2019.

Those records are now surpassed with her Tokyo Olympic Games performance. She becomes only the sixth person in history to win a medal for Great Britain at the Olympics joining a legendary list that consists of Launceston Elliot (gold and silver 1896), Julien Creus (silver 1948) , Jim Halliday (bronze 1948), Louis Martin (bronze 1960 and silver 1964) and David Mercer (bronze 1984).

 

Olivia
Broome

  • Paralympic Medallist
  • Junior World Record Holder
  • European Junior Champion
  • Wold Cup Medallist

Olivia Broome continues to excel at a young age by lifting at an incredibly high standard and is set to perform on the world’s greatest stage by winning Bronze at the 2020 Paralympic Games in the women’s up 50kg category.

Broome originally got involved with the sport on the recommendation of her sister who did some volunteering on UK Sports successful #DiscoverYourGold Talent ID programme.

She was invited down to Loughborough University and her career kickstarted from there.


She made an instant impact in the sport in 2017 by medalling at the British Championships and finishing tenth at the world championships in Mexico City.

Those performances earned her the BWL Young Lifter of the Year award, back when the accolade was combined for both Weightlifting and Para Powerlifting.


In 2018 she won senior bronze at the European Championships in Beck Sur Mur in France and also secured junior gold.


The following year she swept both the Junior and the Senior titles in the women’s up to 50kg class at the Eger World Cup which earned her a second BWL Annual Achievement Award in the Young Para Powerlifter of the Year Category.


At the end of 2019, Broome ranked second in the up to 50kg Junior World Rankings and eighth in the same division at senior level.

She also set a new British Record in the women’s 61kg category at the 2019 British Championships by lifting 96kg at the Ricoh Arena in Coventry.


Before the pandemic, Broome won junior gold and senior bronze at the 2020 Manchester World Cup.

When competitions resumed in 2021, Broome retained her junior gold and won senior silver at the 2021 Manchester World Cup in the women's up to 50 kg category.

The 19-year-old from Chorley, Lancashire successfully lifted 100 kg on her second lift of the competition, which was a crucial qualifying event for this summer’s Paralympic Games.


At the Tbilisi World Cup, which acted as her last event before Tokyo, Broome showcased her abilities by breaking her own British benchmark with a lift of 101kg on her first attempt.

She then extended that to 104kg on lift two and then showcased her potential by making a World Junior Record attempt of 106.5kg on her final lift which she successfully managed to pull off.


That amazing performance also means Broome moves up one position to fifth in the Tokyo women’s up to 50kg Rankings. In the event itself Broome won Bronze in Tokyo extending her record to 107kg. 

Micky
Yule

  • Paralympic Medallist
  • 2x European Champion
  • 2x Paralympian
  • 2x Commonwealth Competitor 

Micky Yule is a European Champion and Paralympic Bronze Medallist. 

Yule was born in Edinburgh, Scotland in 1978 and grew up in Wallyford, Midlothian.

He joined the British Army at the age of seventeen and in 2007 was working as a diving instructor at the Defence Diving School on Horsea Island, Port Solent for three years before being posted to Afghanistan.

Yule served as a staff sergeant in the Royal Engineers and was posted to Helmand province. In March 2010, whilst on patrol, Yule stood on an improvised explosive device.


Yule was a member of the Army Powerlifting team before his injury and took up Para Powerlifting as part of his rehabilitation.


In 2012 he attended his first competitive Para Powerlifting games, representing Great Britain at an international event in Cardiff.


He then took part in his first major international competition, the European Championships where he finished fourth in the 72kg category.


This was followed by a trip to Dubai to take part in the 2014 IPC Powerlifting World Championships, where he finished fourth.


2014 also saw Yule compete at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, competing for Scotland in the men's 72kg+ division where he picked up another fourth place.


In the build-up to the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio, Yule started to find competition success. At the 2015 European Championships in Eger, he took the gold medal in the men's 80kg category.


He followed this with another gold, this time at the 2016 Invictus Games, lifting a personal best of 190kg to dominate the competition.


In 2018 Yule won another European Championship title and finished fourth in his second Commonwealth.


As preparations built towards the 2020 Paralympics Games, Yule produced a strong performance at the test event taking gold at Ready Steady Tokyo in 2019.


He followed this with gold at the 2020 Manchester World Cup which was the last event held before the pandemic.

During that period Yule contracted COVID-19 and after an intense battle with the virus he fought back valiantly to win silver at the 2021 Manchester World Cup.

A sensational showdown at the Dubai World Cup saw the Scottish lifter successfully defend his top eight position in the Tokyo 2020 rankings on bodyweight by just 20 grams due to a brilliant last lift of 185kg in the final Tokyo qualifier. 

He then went on to win Bronze at the Paralympic Games in Tokyo, keeping his cool and composure to lift 182kg in an extraordinary session that saw the main medal contenders fade away. 

 

 

 
 

Louise
Sugden

  • Paralympic Medallist
  • Commonwealth Medallist
  • European Champion
  • 3x Paralympian

Louise Sugden is Paralympic and Commonwealth Medallist and a European Champion

Sugden has had a rapid rise in the sport having switched from wheelchair basketball, in which she represented Paralympics GB at Beijing 2008 and on home soil at London 2012. 

She made an instant impact in her first major Para Powerlifting international by winning silver by the smallest of margins at the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games, taking second spot by just 0.2 AH bodyweight points.

She then went on to secure gold at the European Championships the following month. 

A strong 2019 season for Sugden saw her win gold at both Ready Steady Tokyo, and the Eger World Cup, as well as clinching bronze on a dramatic final day at the Dubai World Cup and finishing seventh at the World Championships as well.  

Those results have seen her make significant progress in-line with Paralympic medal projections and earned her the BWL Sportscover Para Powerlifter of the year award. 

She also set a new British Record in the women’s 86kg category at the British Championships lifting 116kg, which she subsequently broke at the World Championships in Kazakhstan where she lifted 120kg.

Sugden carried on that impressive form into 2020 and won the Sportscover Para Powerlifter of the year award again after a superb performance at the Manchester Para Powerlifting World Cup where she successfully hit three out of three lifts to clinch a new British record of 125kg in the women's up to 86kg category and win gold for Great Britain on home soil. 

That helped Great Britain top the overall team results as well and strengthened her own individual position in the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic qualification rankings before competitions were disrupted by COVID-19. 

At the 2021 Manchester World Cup Louise secured a silver medal, breaking the British record she set the previous year with her third-round lift of 128kg. She then won gold at her final Tokyo qualifier at the Tbilisi World Cup lifting 125kg. 

At the 2020 Paralympic Games Sugden set a new British record lifting 131kg to win Bronze. 

 

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