Greg Silvester

Greg is from Tettenhall, Wolverhampton and he has been an inspiration for young children, families and carers around the county as he has excelled as athlete, coach and advocate when raising awareness of learning disabilities in Great Britain.

Greg began competing in Special Olympics GB gymnastics at the age of 10. In 1989, Greg participated in his first National Summer Games held in Leicester where he won a Bronze medal. "That was when I really started to enjoy it," Greg said, recalling the excitement of early victories. "I met so many people in sport who were great and I loved being a part of it."
Few years later, under the tutelage of former Special Olympics coach Alistair West, Greg became ‘All Round World Champion’ winning seven medals, including four Golds, at the 1995 Special Olympics World Summer Games in Connecticut, USA.

Besides his Gymnastics career, Greg also gave talks to raise awareness of learning disabilities in shopping centres around the country as part of the Road Shows run by a charity called Follow our Dream.

During the mid-90s Greg became one of the first youngsters in Britain with Down’s syndrome to become a qualified mainstream gymnastic coach. Besides coaching, Greg has also trained and competed in swimming, athletics and table tennis.

In 2000, Greg was chosen from hundreds of British people to carry the Olympic torch in Auckland, New Zealand, on its journey to the Sydney Games. In the same year, he was awarded a place in Wolverhampton's Sporting Hall of Fame at Aldersley Leisure Village, and was one of 12 'People of the Year' commended by the Royal Association for Disability and Rehabilitation - others included champion rower Sir Stephen Redgrave.

In 2009, he competed in table tennis at the Special Olympics GB National Summer Games, winning one Gold and two Bronze medals.

Since 2005 Greg is representative of Mencap’s Self Advocacy Committee and in 2010 he joined the ‘Changing Our Lives’ initiative, where Greg supports people with learning disabilities of all ages to advocate for their rights.

Also in 2010, Greg obtained an NVQ level 2 in business administration following a successful work experience at National Grid office in Warwick. In 2011, he was offered a permanent position two days a week as business administrator at National Grid’s West Midlands Gas Alliance office in Wolverhampton.

Greg became Special Olympics GB board member in December 2010.