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FITNESS, HEALTH, WELLNESS

press release: GLL

GLL fitness instructor smashes World Record

15 May 2024
Anthony Bryan beat the Guinness world record for someone paralysed down one side in the 2024 London Marathon / GLL
Anthony Bryan, a fitness instructor at GLL’s Southbury Leisure Centre, recently took part in the London Marathon.

This would be a proud moment for anyone but for Anthony, who suffered a brain tumour and a stroke as a young child which left him with permanent injuries, it’s an almost unbelievable achievement.

Not only did he complete the Marathon, but he beat the Guinness world record for someone paralysed down one side by a full minute, raising £5k for the Stroke Association in the process.

“Doctors told me I would never be able to walk or take part in sport,” Anthony, 34, recalls. “I’ve been on a mission to prove them wrong ever since!

“I hope my story will inspire others – all through your life, you get told what you should and shouldn’t do. I could have listened to the experts and given up but instead, I have turned things around and created a positive life.”

During Covid lockdowns, Anthony broadcast online, Joe Wicks-style keep-fit sessions for disabled people, generating more than 2,000 followers. He now runs exercise classes for older people at the Southbury centre which have proved so popular that there’s a waiting list!

Not content with his recent achievements, he has his sights on breaking another record in The Great Manchester Run at the end of May.

He will be raising money for the Richard Whitehead Foundation which provides ‘guide runners’ to help disabled athletes to take part in sporting events.

Anthony’s own guide runner is Tyler Slade who competes alongside him, tying shoelaces and offering water and encouragement.

Sabrina Forde, GLL’s Community Sport Manager in the region, comments, “We’re all extremely proud of Anthony and the amazing things he’s achieved. He deserves to be celebrated as much as possible!”

More press releases and updates from GLL:
Charitable social enterprise and leisure operator Better has been endorsed by Which? As a recommended provider for leisure centres and gyms.
Oasis Beach Pool, in Bedford, officially re-opens Tuesday 28 May with a celebration for the local community.
On Monday 13th May, team GB sprinter Daryll Neita, an Olympic medallist and one of the nation's leading track and field athletes, hosted a memorable sports day at her home track, GLL’s Sutcliffe Park Sports Centre in Greenwich for pupils from local primary schools.
Active Reality, a leader in Virtual Reality Freeroam Esports Arenas and GLL, the UK’s largest operator of municipal leisure centres, have today (3rd May 24) announced an innovative new partnership that will see a national roll out of gaming technologies within leisure centres across the country.
GLL
Address: Middlegate House, The Royal Arsenal, London, SE18 6SX, UK
Peter Bundey, chief executive officer
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press release: GLL

GLL fitness instructor smashes World Record

15 May 2024
Anthony Bryan beat the Guinness world record for someone paralysed down one side in the 2024 London Marathon / GLL
Anthony Bryan, a fitness instructor at GLL’s Southbury Leisure Centre, recently took part in the London Marathon.

This would be a proud moment for anyone but for Anthony, who suffered a brain tumour and a stroke as a young child which left him with permanent injuries, it’s an almost unbelievable achievement.

Not only did he complete the Marathon, but he beat the Guinness world record for someone paralysed down one side by a full minute, raising £5k for the Stroke Association in the process.

“Doctors told me I would never be able to walk or take part in sport,” Anthony, 34, recalls. “I’ve been on a mission to prove them wrong ever since!

“I hope my story will inspire others – all through your life, you get told what you should and shouldn’t do. I could have listened to the experts and given up but instead, I have turned things around and created a positive life.”

During Covid lockdowns, Anthony broadcast online, Joe Wicks-style keep-fit sessions for disabled people, generating more than 2,000 followers. He now runs exercise classes for older people at the Southbury centre which have proved so popular that there’s a waiting list!

Not content with his recent achievements, he has his sights on breaking another record in The Great Manchester Run at the end of May.

He will be raising money for the Richard Whitehead Foundation which provides ‘guide runners’ to help disabled athletes to take part in sporting events.

Anthony’s own guide runner is Tyler Slade who competes alongside him, tying shoelaces and offering water and encouragement.

Sabrina Forde, GLL’s Community Sport Manager in the region, comments, “We’re all extremely proud of Anthony and the amazing things he’s achieved. He deserves to be celebrated as much as possible!”

More press releases and updates from GLL:
Charitable social enterprise and leisure operator Better has been endorsed by Which? As a recommended provider for leisure centres and gyms.
Oasis Beach Pool, in Bedford, officially re-opens Tuesday 28 May with a celebration for the local community.
On Monday 13th May, team GB sprinter Daryll Neita, an Olympic medallist and one of the nation's leading track and field athletes, hosted a memorable sports day at her home track, GLL’s Sutcliffe Park Sports Centre in Greenwich for pupils from local primary schools.
Active Reality, a leader in Virtual Reality Freeroam Esports Arenas and GLL, the UK’s largest operator of municipal leisure centres, have today (3rd May 24) announced an innovative new partnership that will see a national roll out of gaming technologies within leisure centres across the country.
GLL
Address: Middlegate House, The Royal Arsenal, London, SE18 6SX, UK
Peter Bundey, chief executive officer
GLL video gallery:
Key personnel
Peter Bundey, chief executive officer
Phil Donnay, deputy ceo
Mark Sesnan, OBE, chief officer and special adviser
Key customers
Companies we work with include Annodata, Physical Company, Technogym, Change Please and Divine Chocolate.

Local Authorities and Agencies we work with include Greenwich Council, Belfast City Council, Cardiff City Council, Lee Valley Regional Park Authority, LLDC, ukactive, SportsAid, SportsAid Wales, Mary Peters Trust, Swim England and Sport England.
Plans for the next 12 months
Continue the strong bounce back from Covid, growing membership and sales.

Reducing barriers to participation by maintaining our concessions and Kids for a Quid scheme.

Partnering with UK Active, Community Leisure UK, the LGA, RLSS, Swim England and SEUK lobbying central and local government for financial support to meet the ‘existential threat’ to public leisure operators from utility price rises.
Testimonial
“We made the decision to begin supporting the GLL Sport Foundation in 2015, and it is a pleasure to announce the renewal of our sponsorship with this incredible institution.

"Many bright and talented athletes throughout the United Kingdom are unable to chase their dreams of sporting glory due to lack of funding. We are passionate about helping GSF give equal opportunities to all young people and achieving their dreams of competing on the international stage.

"Our partnership enables both our brands to share the success of the UK’s most aspiring athletes who we are proud to have heard speak in such an inspirational way at our internal Sales Conferences and who have supported our marketing and brand development goals through representation and storytelling both in person and via social media”.
– Rod Tonna-Barthet, chief executive, Annodata
Testimonial
"I am so thankful for the support I have received from GLL Sport Foundation. My first individual medal ever is extremely special, and I would not be here if it wasn’t for the support, I have received from the GLL ‘family’.”
– Daryll Neita, Birmingham Commonwealth Games bronze and silver medalist, GLL Athlete
Testimonial
"This exciting new chapter cements the future of our six key sports venues and is part of our commitment to the many communities we serve far and wide. We have carefully structured this partnership with GLL to ensure that visitors will continue to enjoy the very best in these stellar, highly popular venues. We look forward to together creating exciting new programmes and activities that draw on the strengths of both organisations.

“These venues are part of the Lee Valley visitor experience and will continue to be so with some of the best facilities and most inspiring settings to be found anywhere. As part of the partnership Lee Valley Regional Park Authority will continue to invest to ensure that they go from strength to strength, delivering real impact for communities.”
– Shaun Dawson chief executive, Lee Valley Regional Park Authority
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