Training groups

Gloucester AC has a number of training groups depending on discipline, age and ability. Training is typically on Tuesday and Thursday evenings and is based at Blackbridge Jubilee Athletics Track, but precise times and venues may vary.


For sessions that take place on the track, track entry is £2.00 for club members, and £4.00 for non-members. Grass and road sessions do not incur a charge.


The minimum age criterion for club membership is age 7 and/or in School Year 3.  Sorry, but we are not currently accepting people below this age.


Please see the table below to find the group most suitable to you, then follow the links for more details.


Age Discipline Group
7 to 16 All Youth Academy
13 to 17 Track & field Track & Field
11 to 17 Distance running 800m+ Endurance
12+ Distance beginner / recreational running for health & fitness Endurance
18+ Track & Field Track & Field
18+ Distance running 800m+ Endurance
All Para-athletics Para-Athletics


We are a competitive club! In return for the time and commitment put in by our coaches, we expect members (except Endurance Beginners) to represent the club in the club's targeted competitions. These competitions can be found under the 'Competing' tab.

Meet the coaches!

Gloucester Youth Academy

Steve Millward


BSc (Hons) Sports Science

MSc Exercise Physiology


Currently working towards his Athletics Coach qualification, Steve takes the Monday night group and offers a variety of activities that will enable young athletes (age 9 and upwards) to find out what they can achieve. With an emphasis on enjoyment, we look at skill acquisition and speed development which will benefit any event that they wish to pursue. Steve has been a member of Gloucester AC since 2008, has one senior UK Inter-Counties title, 6 British Masters titles and 11 regional titles over the steeplechase and has represented England several times at the Masters Home International XC.

Aaron Bennett




Hannah Bennett



Craig Murch


Craig has been in athletics for as long as he can remember and specialises in the Hammer Throw.


He has been coached by three of the best hammer coaches in the UK and is currently coached by Gloucester AC Coach Lorraine Shaw. Craig is currently ranked 4th in the UK.


Craig also has a passion for Pole Vault and has experience in coaching beginners through to intermediate level. Having Graduated from Loughborough Uni in 2016 he is now Coaching a dedicated Pole Vault group. 

Middle distance

Paul DeCamps


Paul has almost 25 years’ experience of coaching endurance athletes at the highest level.   He has coached athletes to County, Regional, Territorial, National and International titles in track and field, over distances from 800 metres to 5000 metres, and cross country.   His athletes also have achieved representative honours for Great Britain and Northern Ireland, England and Wales.   He currently coaches a group of mainly under 20 and senior athletes, male and female, but younger athletes are welcome to join the group provided they have the necessary training experience.   The aim of the training group is to develop athletes to their full potential.   Anyone enquiring about joining the group can contact Paul via the club web site at

Andrew DeCamps


Andrew is a former high calibre 800 metre runner who has won Midland titles indoor and outdoor as well as Welsh representative honours.   He is a post graduate in Sports Physiology and now uses his attributes and experience to assist with the coaching of the club’s middle distance athletes.   Andrew’s tactical nous and advise, in both indoor and outdoor races, is of particular value to up and coming athletes.

Arthur Daley

Arthur Daley is a Coach in Running Fitness and Endurance Coach. He is the lead coach for  Young Athletes Middle Distance Group and can be contacted on 01452 489480 or As an active distance runner he enjoys competing on track, road and cross country. He has recently represented England Masters on the road and country and has, since 2011, consistently been ranked over road and track in the top ten in his age group for distances from 800m to 10K. He also officiates, being qualified in all four track and field disciplines and as an endurance official in competitions from local to international level. 

Kerry Newell


Kerry Newell is a highly respected coach at Gloucester Athletic club working for over 10 years with them. She coaches a very competitive squad of 400/800m track runners of all abilities and welcomes runners of all ages who are committed to improve.  The friendly track group also work on strength and conditioning, drills and form to support their running.  


Kerry is a professional coach working for England Athletics as a Run Club Coach supporting and advising coaches up and down the UK with learning new skills.  She is also one of the Team Coaches for the England Masters Marathon team and is a Coach Trainer, teaching our new trainee coaches up and down the UK for England Athletics and Welsh Athletics.  Kerry is a qualified Athletics Coach, Coaching in Running Fitness Coach and Level 1 Strength and conditioning coach.


Sessions are normally held on 

Tuesday 6 - 7.15pm - track

Wednesday 5.15 - 6.15pm - strength session

Thursday 6 - 7.15pm - track/field

Saturday - 10am - 11.30am - track


Justin Smith BSc (Hons) Sports Coaching & MSc Coaching Science

UKA Sprints & Hurdles Level 3

Strength & Conditioning Level 3


Justin joined Gloucester AC in 2012 when he moved to Hartpury College to study a Sports Coaching & Science Degree. Originally from South Africa, Justin competed to a national level as a sprinter (& cross country). A high point was representing South Africa Schools in the USA. 


Justin volunteered for Gloucester AC for many years with the short sprints group having qualified as a sprints coach. Justin's focus is on short sprints from 100m to 400m. Recently, in 2020, Justin turned his passion to becoming a professional coach with his business SpeedProject Training where he works with a variety of different athletes both in athletics and team sports. 


Justin works as part of the successful Elite Rugby Academy at Hartpury as a speed coach with professional rugby players and other sport athletes. 


On top of this he is a qualified Strength and Conditioning coach, who also provides strength-based training for his current group of athletes through SpeedProject Training at Crypt School.


Sprint Group Training Times are below:


These sessions are subject to change during the year but mostly will stay the same in both the Winter and Summer months.


Monday – Track (18:00 till 19:30) + Gym (19:30 till 20:15)

Wednesday – Track (18:00 till 19:30) + Gym (19:30 till 20:15)

Thursday – Track (18:00 till 19:30) + Gym (19:30 till 20:15)


Richard Blackwell


Richard, aka "Dicky Sprint", is a qualified athletics coach, specialising in sprints and relays. An experienced competitor with a personal best time of 10.6 seconds for 100m, he was captain of the highly successful Gloucester club teams in the 1980s.

Hurdles & Jumps

Jo Willoughby - Long & Triple Jump


Jo returned to athletics when her daughter, Dayna, joined Gloucester AC and has qualified as a UKA coach. An ex Welsh and GB international long and triple jumper (6.38m and 11.31m) she is now coaching jumps to athletes aged 11 to adult. Jo is also a field event official for the club.

Ian Willoughby - Hurdles, Sprints, Steeplechase, Long & Triple Jump


Ian started coaching in the late 70s as a BAAB coach and successfully coached 5 athletes to reach the ESAA sprint hurdle finals. He also assisted with the Midland Hurdles squads. While living in Bristol he helped run coaching weekends for Avon schools athletes. He coached his wife Jo prior to her becoming a long jump GB international in 1988. He left athletics until his daughter, Dayna, decided to start running back in 2011 and he requalified as a coach. He ran 110m hurdles with a best time of 14.65s and his claim to fame is running against Colin Jackson in his 1st race over 110m hurdles. He is also a qualified field event official for the club.


Lorraine Shaw


Lorraine is the 2002 Commonwealth Games Champion and former UK Record Holder. She has extensive experience coaching hammer from beginner to Olympic standard.

Tim Williams


Tim has been coached at hammer by Lorraine at the club since 2002 and is the club record holder for the hammer throw. He won the BUCS Championship in 2012.


Ian Summers


Ian aka "Lofty" is a Level 3 Endurance Coach and has been running road races, cross-country and multi terrain events, including a umber of ultra-distance races, ever since he joined the club 20 years ago. He has been cross-country captain and has organised many races for the club over the years. He has also competed for the club in track and field and is a Level 2 Field Judge.

Dave Gresswell


Dave is a UKA Coach Level 2 (Endurance). A distance runner for 25 years, Dave has taken part in hundreds of local, national, and overseas events. Dave helps coach the senior distance athletes on Tuesday and Thursday club sessions. Dave is also a qualified track official, and helps organise some of the clubs annual road races.

Combined Events

Matt Holloway

Event Group level 3 performance coach in Jumps, Sprints & Hurdles, Throws and Endurance

Level 4 Strength and Conditioning Coach

Youth Strength and Conditioning Specialist


Matt coaches a group for the combined events which is the heptathlon for women and decathlon for men.


They train at the following times – 

Monday – 4:30pm to 8:00pm for Years 3 to 11, see Youth Academy page for times for different age groups

Friday – 4:30pm to 6:00pm years 6 and up 

Saturday – 9am to 10:30am all events then 10:30am to midday for the pole vault


Athletes don’t need to attend all the days, ideally a Monday and then one of the other days.


Matt will give the highest level of coaching and support to all the athletes to achieve their long-term potential. He is passionate about youth development and is always striving to improve his own coaching skills. He regularly shadows some of the best coaches in the UK and their athletes. 


He runs his own business as a strength and conditioning coach and personal trainer. He has always been a keen follower of athletics and loves the variation and challenge of combined events. If you are interested in training in the heptathlon or decathlon you can email Matt on Anyone from Year 6 to adults of any ability is welcome as the group is split accordingly.


Bob Purcell


Bob is a level 3 coach in speed, strength and conditioning, He is presently focused on coaching para-athletes including racing wheelchair, racerunning, ambulant throws and ambulant running across a range of classifications. He is  also a Field Official and Timekeeper. Bob has served Gloucester AC in a variety of coaching, officiating, managerial and developmental roles since 1993. He was also instrumental, with colleagues, in the redevelopment of the Blackbridge Track in partnership with the City Council and continues to take a leading role in its maintenance and management.