The History of Leatherhead & Dorking Gymnastics Club


The club was founded.

1976: Gymnastics Club formed.

1975 - 1980: Established at temporary venue in Epsom.


A permanent home was constructed, making history in England, and success soon followed.

1980: Funding approved for the first purpose built club gymnastics facility in England and Alison Isles & Lilia White become Asymmetric Bars Champion at Wembley.

1981: New facility opens.

1981 - 1986: Club becomes established with young gymnasts becoming members of British Gymnastics under 12 and junior squads.

1982 - 1986: Success at Regional Championships - Team and Individual.

1984: Club became Regional Centre of Excellence - Sports Council Designated.

1987: Club establishes Scholarship link with Manor House School and with C&A Group. First Scholarship holder Emma Webber wins Thames TV Junior Gymnast of the Year at the Wembley Arena.

Vladimir Aksenov joins Leatherhead & Dorking from Moscow Dynamo - milestone appointment to a club in Great Britain - coach to World Olympic Champions

1988: Sarah Mercer becomes 1st in British Championship as 'Guest'

1989: Sarah Mercer becomes British Women's Champion she goes on to compete at the European Championships - Belgium and World School Games.


International competitive success, a new gymnasium is added.

1990: Sarah Mercer - World School Games - Sardinia - Team/Individual Medal.

1991: Sarah Mercer - European Championships - Greece.

1992: Emma Suckling - Selected for the European Championships - Sweden.

1993: Margaret Miler - International (Brevet) Judge Cycle 8 - represented Great Britain in International Competitions.

1993 - 1994: Karin Szymko - British Championships - Bronze Medal.

1993: Club wins Bronze Medal at British Teams Championship.

1994: Karin Szymko - England Commonwealth Games Team Gold Medal. Victoria, Canada and European Championships.

1994: Club opens second gymnasium.

1995: Karin Szymko - World Championships Sabae - Japan.

1997: Katy Lennon - British Espoire Junior Champion - plus three individual titles.

1999: World Student Games Championships.

2000 - 2009

Major extension to the gym facilities is completed and the elite teams see medal success in the Commonwealth Games and British Championships.

2001 - 2002: Louise Hill - 3 times World Student Games Championships, 3 times British Universities Champion.

2000: Club becomes British Gymnastics High Performance Centre.

2001: Katy Lennon competes in the World Championships. Sarah McRea - Disabled International in Ireland.

2002: Katy Lennon - England Commonwealth Games - Manchester - Team Silver Medal. British Championships - Vault - Gold Medal

2003: Katy Lennon - International Selection - appointed Great Britain Team Captain

2004: Katy Lennon - British Championships - Silver Medal. Katy Lennon - Olympic Games, Athens - Team Captain - overall finalist finishing in 21st place

2005: Planning permission granted for Club Extension

2008: New Gymnasium extension opened at a cost of £750,000