FOREST SCHOOL USED AS SECRET ‘QUIET CAMP’ BY TEAM GB ATHLETES DURING LONDON 2012 OLYMPIC GAMES
LONDON – Forest School in Snaresbrook, London, can now reveal that its sporting facilities were used by a number of high-profile Team GB athletes during the London Olympic Games. Between July and August, Team GB’s Boxing, Swimming, Hockey, Fencing and Taekwondo teams used Forest School as a ‘quiet camp’ – a place to train away from distraction, using the School’s excellent sporting facilities. Several Team GB athletes who trained at Forest School during the Olympics have gone on to win Olympic medals:
Jade Jones – Gold medal in Taekwondo
The 19 year old’s stunning victory over reigning world champion Yuzhuo Huo from China delivered the 25th Gold medal for Team GB.
Nicola Adams – Gold medal in Boxing
Nicola Adams made history as the first-ever Olympic champion in women’s boxing, in the flyweight category.
Anthony Joshua – Gold medal in Boxing
The new Olympic super-heavyweight champion, having defeated Italy’s defending champion Roberto Cammarelle.
Luke Campbell – Gold medal in Boxing
Became Britain’s most decorated amateur, after defeating Ireland’s John Joe Nevin in the final.
Fred Evans – Silver medal in Boxing
The Welsh welterweight took Silver, in the final against Kazakhstan’s Serik Sapiyev
Anthony Ogogo – Bronze medal in Boxing
The 23 year old middleweight fought bravely against Brazil’s Esquiva Falcao.
Lutalo Muhammed – Bronze medal in Taekwondo
Waltham Forest’s own Muhammed secured a Bronze medal.
Team GB Women’s Hockey Team – Bronze medal
Secured after a 3-1 win over New Zealand
Team GB bosses sought privacy for their athletes during the Games, so British Olympic Association representatives visited over 20 locations in the local area – Forest School’s facilities, location and support were deemed the best. Athletes could train and relax within the confines of the School’s peaceful grounds, located on the edge of Epping Forest in north-east London, whilst benefitting from using the School’s advanced sporting facilities. Forest has a rich sporting tradition and remains the only school to have ever competed in the FA Cup, so the School boasts up-to-date sporting equipment.
The concept of a ‘quiet camp’ was first piloted by Rebecca Adlington as she stormed her way to Olympic Gold during the 2008 Bejing Games. Adlington believed that training away from the often hectic Athletes’ Village helped her greatly in her quest to win Olympic Gold. Due to the proximity of Forest School to the Stratford Olympic Village – just four miles (a 15 minute drive) from the Olympic Park, the School was seen as an ideal location for Team GB athletes to train. Forest School is the nearest independent school to the Olympic Park.
Team GB athletes were ferried in between the Athletes’ Village and Forest School by School staff in a specially designated ‘Olympic Minibus’. Depending on the training requirements of Team GB athletes, they used either the School’s well-equipped gym or the School’s large sports hall. Due to the unique training requirements of Team GB’s fencers, they predominantly used the School’s cricket suite.
Everything from coordinating the safe collection and return of Team GB athletes to/from the Olympic Park, right through to ensuring that all of the athletes’ needs were met whilst here, was overseen by Forest School’s Sylvestrian Leisure Centre Manager, Wayne Bishop.
In a personal letter from Andy Hunt, Chief Executive & Chef de Mission Team GB London 2012, the School is praised ‘for the support given to Team GB during the London 2012 Olympic Games’. He goes on to say that ‘support from all colleagues has been unwaveringly positive’ and ‘the excellent facilities in (the School’s) Sylvestrian Leisure Centre ‘have provided a quiet haven’ for Team GB athletes. Mr Hunt signs off with thanks to the School for ‘contribution to the success of Team GB at London 2012’.
On Team GB’s Boxers using Forest facilities, Rob McCracken, Performance Director for Boxing: “Superb facilities perfect for my athletes”.
Wayne Bishop, Sylvestrian Leisure Centre Manager: “This has been a fantastic experience for staff at Forest School. The athletes that used our site have all commented on the superb facilities and support they received. It has been immensely enjoyable”.
The following Team GB athletes used Forest School as their Olympics quiet camp:
Team GB Boxing – Gold medallist Nicola Adams (Flyweight), Andrew Selby (Flyweight), Anthony Joshua (Super Heavyweight), Anthony Ogogo (Middleweight), Fred Evans (Welterweight), Josh Taylor (Lightweight), Luke Campbell (Bantamweight), Natasha Jonas (Lightweight), Savannah Marshall (Middleweight), Tom Stalker (Light Welterweight).
Team GB Taekwondo – Gold medallist Jade Jones, Lutalo Muhammed, Martin Stamper, Sarah Stevenson
Team GB Men’s Hockey – Jonty Clarke, James Fair, Ashley Jackson, Iain Mackay, Barry Middleton, Harry Martin, Richard Smith, James Tindall, Rob Moore, Daniel Fox, Glenn Kirkham, Matt Daly, Ben Hawes, Alistair Wilson, Nick Caitlin, Iain Lewers
Team GB Women’s Hockey – Alex Danson, Ashleigh Ball, Anne Panter, Beth Storey, Chloe, Rogers, Crista Cullen, Emily Maquire, Georgie Twigg, hannah MacLeod, Helen Richardson, Kate Walsh(c), laura Bartlet, Laura Unsworth, Nicola White, Sally Walton, Sarah Thomas
Team GB Men’s Fencing – Husayn Rosowsky, Richard Kruse, James Davis
Team GB Women’s Fencing – Louise Bond-Williams, Corrina Lawrence, Sophie Williams, Sophie Troiano
Team GB Men’s Swimming – Ross Davenport (4x200m freestyle relay), Liam Tancock (100m backstroke), Grant Turner (4x100m freestyle relay).
Team GB Women’s Swimming – Aimee Wilmott (400m individual medley), Hannah Miley (200m individual medley and 400m individual medley), Francesca Halshall (50m freestyle and 100m)
In preparation for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, the following young British swimmers also trained at Forest School: Lucy Spencer, Karley Mann and Matthew Johnson