Team Wales celebrate Wales Week London

Wales Week London 2024 is a celebration of Wales across London, and due to its success and keen interest from Wales and internationally, the event now runs for nearly a month in February and March.

Team Wales hosted three events during Wales Week London. The first ‘Games changes – An evening of Welsh sport and business’, held in the beautiful setting at St Ethelburga’s centre for reconciliation and peace, and hosted collaboratively between Team Wales, Mauve Group and Welsh Athletics, welcomed over 100 guests to Bishopsgate. Special guests, Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson, Aled Sion Davies MBE and Christian Malcolm joined host Cathy Williams, Head of Engagement for Team Wales, to give an insight into their outstanding contribution to sport, both at the Commonwealth Games, and the Olympics and Paralympics.

Baroness Tani has won 16 medals across 5 Paralympic Games,13 World Championship medals, 6 of them being Gold, and winning the London Marathon a record six times.

Tanni also spoke of her career in business and politics, and how the importance of inclusivity is paramount to today’s society.

Christian Malcolm winning his first British vest at just 17 years of age, and made his Olympics debut at the 2000 Athens Games. He competed in 4 Olympics, with London 2012 being his final Games. He became Worlds junior champion in 1998 in the 100m and 200m, becoming only the second athlete in history to win the double at this event.

Christian gave an insight into his career as a coach and encouraging the next generation of athletes to aspire for Commonwealth success.

Aled Sion Davies, who has topped the podium in all major events, with the Gold medal in the FXX discus at the most recent Commonwealth Games in Birmingham 2022 being the last of the titles to claim. He spoke of his aspirations to repeat Tokyo’s success and win Gold at this summer’s Paris Paralympics.

Guest speakers at the event included the Vice Chancellor for Cardiff Metropolitan University, Rachel Langford, Kerry Katsapaos from Mauve Group, Welsh Athletics CEO James Williams, Team Wales Chief Executive Rebecca Edwards-Symmons.

Rebecca said ‘The panel line up could have not been better. Their stories, achievements and views was really interesting. The guests couldn’t wait to speak to them after the panel finished, which just demonstrates the importance of having individuals like Tanni, Aled and Christian flying the flag for Wales. It was a special evening, and great partnership with Mauve and Welsh Athletics.’

The following morning, Christian and Aled visited Ysgol Gymraeg Llundain, the Welsh speaking primary school in London. Through the medium of Welsh, Cathy gave an

insight into Team Wales’s rich history and the inspirational successes the Games have produced. The pupils had an opportunity to as Aled and Christian questions before having an engaging practical session in their sports hall.

Rebecca Edwards-Symmons added ‘Wonderful school and we were really pleased to visit the school once again. Our Head of Engagement, Cathy has worked with the school over a number of years, it’s great to be able to bring a little bit of Wales to the young pupils. The welcome we had was superb, and Aled and Christian were amazing with the children.’

The final Wales Week London event was held at the RBC head office in Bishopsgate. Team Wales partnered with RBC, FAW, WRU and Sport Wales, with Pure Cyber hosting the drinks reception after the event.

The evening, titled ‘Amplify – Women in Sport Leadership’, had an impressive panel of female leaders, Abi Tierney, WRU’s first female Chief Executive, Alys Carlton, FAW’s first female Chair, and Team Wales’s first female CEO, Rebecca Edwards-Symmons.

Brian Davies joined the strong panel, giving an insight into the importance of having strong female leaders in sport, and the need to support each other, as individuals and as organisations.

The event was hosted by Broadcaster and BBC Wales TV presenter, Lucy Owen.

Abi, Alys and Rebecca spoke about the challenges of climbing the leadership ladder in sport, the highs of success and the overwhelming support from fellow Welsh leaders and organisations.

Rebecca Edwards-Symmons, CEO added ‘It was such an interesting evening, and it was great to be involved in the panel. Hearing from Abi and Alys and the shoes they have had to fill in their organisations was really insightful, and it was really reassuring to hear Brian’s viewpoint on female leaders. He has a wealth of experience in leading an organisation and I hope everyone in the room felt uplifted and inspired by the open and honest discussion.’