Shropshire has a strong connection to the Olympics as Much Wenlock is home to the Wenlock Olympian Games, which are thought to have inspired the modern Olympic Games that began in 1896.
It just so happens that National Sporting Heritage Day falls on Monday 30 September, so we thought our object of the month should reflect this. Therefore, we have chosen this Team GB tracksuit worn by archer, Alison Williamson, at the 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona.
Along with items related to Wenlock Olympian Games we have a several items donated by sports men and women with a connection to the county.
Our object of the month is one of several outfits and items donated to Shropshire Museums by Alison Williamson, who competed in archery for Great Britain at six consecutive Olympic Games, from 1992 to 2012. Williamson’s highest Olympic achievement was winning a bronze medal at the 2004 Games in Athens.
For her services to archery she was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in the 2012 Birthday Honours.
This tracksuit, given to Williamson for the 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona, is made up of an Adidas jacket and trousers in the Team GB colours of red, white and blue. A great example of 1990s style, with large bright blocks of colour making it stand out from just any tracksuit is the inclusion of the British flags and Team GB branding. The tracksuit is made from the light weight and durable materials of polyester and nylon.
Williamson is a member the Long Mynd Archers, which is a club based in Church Stretton. There are several historic archery clubs in the county and you might be surprised to know that a great deal of the archers were women. The Archers of the Teme club was in fact founded by Lady Curtis of Caynham Court near Ludlow, in 1857.