Four British sporting legends were inducted into the Stoke Mandeville Hall of Fame during the Inter Spinal Unit Games, which is held every year at Stoke Mandeville spinal centre to promote a healthy and active lifestyle through sport for people who had recently experienced a spinal injury.
The four inductees were: sharp shooter Isabel Newstead MBE (Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire); table tennis star Jane Blackburn; the ‘Quadfather’ Peter Norfolk OBE (Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire); and wheelchair basketball legend Simon Munn. They join a small group of elite British Paralympians with a unique connection to the stadium, the birthplace of the Paralympic Movement and the charity WheelPower.
Norfolk OBE said: “It is an honour to be included in the hall of fame.
“There is nothing you can’t do, in this day and age, you can go and do whatever you wish.”
WheelPower Chairman, Kevan Baker said: “The Stoke Mandeville hall of fame was introduced in 2003 and honours great men and women within Paralympic sport in this country. It carries on the long tradition of a roll of honour, which dates back to the birth of the Paralympic Movement at the stadium in the 1940s.”
About the inductees:
Isabel Newstead MBE - Paralympic debut in Arnhem 1980 and went on to compete at seven Paralympic Games. At the 1984 Paralympic Games, held at Stoke Mandeville she won nine medals across three sports. She was a trailblazer for women and for athletes with a high-level physical disability.
Jane Blackburn - Blackburn competed in five Paralympic Games, from 1972 to 1992. A naturally gifted player, Blackburn was undefeated on the table tennis table between 1972 and 1986, and was Paralympic champion at four consecutive Paralympic Games. Jane was an all-rounder in the days when athletes competed in multiple sports. Jane was honoured in 2012 when selected as one of the first five torchbearers in the London 2012 Paralympic torch relay.
Peter Norfolk OBE - Norfolk competed in the inaugural quad singles Paralympic wheelchair tennis competition in 2004 in Athens, winning the gold medal in singles and the silver medal in doubles. Peter defended his gold medal at the Paralympic Games in Beijing and won the bronze in the doubles. At the London 2012 Paralympic Games Norfolk had the honour of leading the Great Britain team into the Opening Ceremony as the flagbearer before winning a silver medal in the quad doubles.
Simon Munn – Munn represented Great Britain at an astonishing seven Paralympic Games. He has been an integral part of Great Britain's wheelchair basketball team at the 1992, 1996, 2000, 2004, 2008, 2012 and the 2016 Paralympics winning a silver medal in Atlanta and bronze medals in Sydney; Athens and most recently in Rio last year. In addition to his four Paralympic medals he won two World Championship silver medals and 11 European medals, four of which were gold.