England Athletics announces eight inductees into Hall of Fame

England Athletics is delighted to announce this year’s inductees into its prestigious Hall of Fame for 2022.

The Hall of Fame recognises and honours greats of the sport who have contributed significantly to athletics and running in areas such as elite performance and coaching.

This year’s Hall of Fame evening at the Hilton Birmingham Metropole (NEC) on Saturday 15 October, will also see us looking back on an incredible 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham where Team England’s track, field, and marathon athletes and para-athletes won 34 medals.

We’re delighted to confirm we’ll be joined on the night by members of our inspirational Birmingham 2022 athletics team.

To be a part of a special celebration of our wonderful sport, you can purchase tickets to join us for the evening dinner and awards presentation which will also feature the winners of the 2021 England Athletics’ National Volunteer Awards.

The eight Hall of Fame inductees for 2022 are:

  • Keith Connor: Triple jumper who won successive Commonwealth Games gold medals for England in 1978 and 1982. Won European gold in 1982 followed by bronze at the 1984 Olympic Games. Has since enjoyed a successful career in coaching and sports administration.
  • Sophie Hitchon: Hammer thrower and British record-holder which she achieved when winning Olympic bronze, Great Britain’s first ever Olympic medal in the event, at the 2016 Rio Games. Commonwealth bronze medallist in Glasgow 2014.
  • Percy Hodge: Born in 1890, won 3,000m steeplechase gold for Great Britain at the 1920 Olympics in Antwerp, Belgium, setting a Games record. Also ran in the heats of the team event in which Great Britain won silver.
  • John Isaacs: One of Britain’s top sprint coaches who worked with some of the country’s most successful athletes, including Tony Jarrett and John Regis, as part of his Haringey AC-based training group
  • Dean Macey: Great Britain and England decathlete between 1995 to 2008, winning the Commonwealth Games title, two world championship medals, as well as finishing fourth in the Olympics. Has gone on to enjoy success in television and broadcasting.
  • Howard Payne: Represented Great Britain in the hammer in three consecutive Olympic Games, starting in 1964. Won Commonwealth Games gold for England in 1962, 1966 and 1970 and silver in 1974 before his passing in 1992, aged 60.
  • Jon Ridgeon: Competed in both the 110m and 400m hurdles between 1984 and 1996, winning World Championship silver for Great Britain in 1987 in the shorter event. A two-times Olympian whose forged a successful career in broadcasting and sports marketing.
  • Steve Smith: Britain’s most successful ever high jumper, having won a medal in every major championship including the Olympic Games in 1996. Set the British outdoor record in 1992 which still stands today, 30 years on.

The National Volunteer Awards will also form an extremely important part of the evening as we welcome those winners from 2021 and help shine a spotlight on the inspirational work, passion, and commitment that volunteers bring to our sport.

The 2021 National Volunteer Award winners were:

  • Club of the Year: Wirral Athletic Club
  • Coach of the Year: Jonathan Tilt (Southampton AC)
  • Newcomer to Officiating: Luke Finch (Woodford Green AC)
  • Young Volunteer of the Year: Ashley Watson
  • Unsung Hero of the Year: Helen Pickard (Committee and Fixture Secretary, Stevenage and North Herts AC, Hertfordshire)
  • RunTogether Group of the Year: Run Scarborough (North Yorkshire)
  • Leader of the Year: Josh Taylor (Bridlington Road Runners, North Yorkshire)
  • Innovation in Athletics and Running at Home: Mark Smith (North Shields Polytechnic Club)
  • Services to Athletics or Running: Les Barnett (Leamington Cycling and Athletic Club, Warwickshire)

Chris Jones, CEO of England Athletics, said:

“The Hall of Fame evening is a stand-out date in the calendar. It enables us to celebrate all that is great about our sport, from our outstanding National Volunteer Award Winners through to our inspirational Hall of Fame inductees for 2022.

“This year is even more exciting as it gives us an opportunity to recognise the achievements of our incredible Team England athletes who helped make the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham this summer such a spectacular success.

“The Hall of Fame showcases that inextricable link between grassroots athletics and the sport at elite level and we couldn’t be prouder to welcome all those attending, bring together people from all parts of the country and all areas of athletics and running to celebrate those who make our sport great.”

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  • Featured image by Mark Shearman (exc. Percy Hodge):
    • Top row, left to right: Keith Connor, Sophie Hitchon, Percy Hodge, John Isaacs.
    • Bottom row, left to right: Dean Macey, Howard Payne, Jon Ridgeon, Steve Smith.