Paralympian to take the plunge at Thornbury Arts Festival

September 29 2017

SWIMMER Kate Grey, who just missed out on the medals in the 2008 Beijing Paralympics, will be one of the star guests at the next Thornbury Arts Festival.

SWIMMER Kate Grey, who just missed out on the medals in the 2008 Beijing Paralympics, will be one of the star guests at the next Thornbury Arts Festival.

Kate, 28, competed internationally for many years, also winning silver and bronze medals at the IPC (International Paralympic Committee) world championships. 

Illness meant she missed out on qualifying for the London 2012 Paralympic Games but it led to her move into the media and although she has since retired from the pool, she now works as a sports reporter, commentator and pundit.

Kate is from Thornbury and is a former pupil at the Castle School.

She lost her hand in an accident when she was two but it never stopped her enthusiasm for taking part in sport.

Kate went on to study at Bath University, where she also trained, and in 2010 was voted the university’s sports personality of the year.

At the 2018 arts festival next April, Kate will give a lunchtime talk about growing up with a disability, the highs and lows of being an elite athlete and switching into the world of broadcasting.

Another former Castle School student, Andy Clarke, has been booked to give an evening talk about his career as a producer, director, writer and broadcaster for television food series.

He has been involved in TV cookery shows for some ten years, including Saturday Kitchen Live and a number of James Martin programmes.

The arts festival runs from Friday, April 20, to Saturday, April 28, and as already reported in Thornbury Voice, will be launched by comedian Jeremy Hardy performing on the opening night.

A regular on The News Quiz on Radio 4, his other work on the station includes Jeremy Hardy Speaks to the Nation, I’m Sorry I Haven’t a Clue and You’ll Have Had Your Tea.

Other festival highlights include a performance by the Birmingham Town Hall Gospel Choir, winners of the first Songs of Praise Gospel Choir of the Year, and actor Rebecca Vaughan with her award winning drama Jane Eyre: an Autobiography.

The remaining programme is still being developed by festival organisers, who will announce other acts as they are booked. Tickets will go on sale at a later date.