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Barnsley, Huddersfield, Rotherham and Wakefield Around Town Online Local Celebrities
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Local Celebrities in the Barnsley Area
The Editor Meets...
Donna Hartley

Up to now all the people interviewed for Around Barnsley have been men. They have also been individuals who I had not had the pleasure of meeting previously. Meeting with Donna obviously allowed me to meet my first lady but also with someone I had met before albeit only quite recently.

Donna manages the Reflections Fitness Centre and Spa at Marstons Hotels’ Tankersley Manor and we first met when I nervously enrolled when the Centre first opened last year. So I already knew that I was meeting an enthusiast, a motivator, a hard worker and an almost frighteningly fit looking but very friendly individual.

Donna was quite correctly labelled the Golden Girl of British Athletics (and I have never met a “golden girl” before.) In the 1970’s she had a remarkable representative career and was a major force in British athletics. First as a 200 and then a 400 metres specialist she came to national attention as a teenager winning the 200 metres national WAAA Championships in 1972. In 1974 she moved up to 400 and came second in the WAAA in June and set a new UK record time of 51.77 seconds in Stockholm. The following year she lowered this to a life-time best of 51.28 when coming second in the 400 metres at the European Cup semi-final in Sofia. During this time she was a key member in national competitions and great favourite with crowds and on TV presentations. One particularly well-known highlight was her 400 metres win in the Great Britain v Soviet Union match at Crystal Palace in August 1975.

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