Jersey Sports Association for the Disabled
Jersey Sports Association for the Disabled

Huge anxiety for Jersey Special Gymnastics Club 

May 24th 2022

 

After all the trials and tribulations of the Covid-filled past two years, another sinister situation is currently being faced by the Jersey Special Gymnastics Club.

 

The Club have been told they must vacate their premises at Greenfields and remove all their substantial equipment from the site.

 

This is at a time when the club have a team participating in UK for a competition in early July, which is a qualifier for the next World Games in Berlin next year. If one or more of the gymnasts are selected for a GB team slot it will, of course, add pressure to ensure the club have some access to a gym and equipment for training.  There are only three places available on the GB Team so competition will be strong.

 

According to the JSAD, this is a particular body-blow as there is no political leadership anywhere in the run up to the general election next month. The JSAD also say that: ”This club has produced some of the finest athletes Jersey has seen, at world level, so this situation is totally unacceptable.”

 

The States of Jersey’s Children, Education and Skills department have sent a “notice to vacate the sports hall” at Greenfields Secure Children’s home, citing that “due to the nature of risk associated with residents at Greenfields, we are unable to establish dual purpose.”  

 

The chair of the Jersey Special Gymnastics Club, Jeannine Carey, gave us her reaction to the news. “The coaching team and committee were disappointed and shocked to hear, via Channel 103 initially on the 6th April, that we were required to be out of our premises by the 5th July,” she said. “The timing is not good for the club when we have gymnasts competing in the UK on the 9th and 10th July so they need to train on equipment up to the event.”
 
Jeannine also explained the kind of premises that are needed. “We ideally require a property at least 6 metres high with a minimum of 30 metres in length and 16 metres wide. We will also require toilets, including a disabled toilet, a small store room for supplementary equipment, parking & access for safe drop offs.”
 
She also added that in order to store all its equipment, whilst finding a new home, the club require a store of at least 4 metres in height, and a floor space of 12 metres by 10 metres.
 
Looking at a worst-case scenario, what happens if no new or temporary premises can be found? Jeannine is quite clear on this. “It would be absolutely soul destroying if no premises could be found temporarily and the thought that the club would cease to continue is not something that we are willing to consider at the moment.”
 
Jeannine also gave an historical context to the problem. “The Special Gymnastics Club was founded in 1991 by John Grady and has produced several World Champions,” she said. “We hope that it will do so in the future. We would not wish to see all the work he did undone. The longer we are without premises the harder it will be to maintain the levels our gymnasts are currently working at, and also grow or maintain the current level of participation.”
 
She finished off by telling us how important the sport is for all the participants. “Gymnastics is a good sport for teaching discipline, independence and a strong work ethos, and has helped many of our young special needs gymnasts thrive and go on to better things as a result.”
 
If you, or anybody you know can help, please contact chair Jeannine Carey or head coach Nikki Kirkland at jsyspecialgym@hotmail.com or contact the JSAD either by mail: thejsad7@gmail.com or by phone: +44 1534 872855.
 

 

 

 

 

Gym Club stars meet Jersey's Bailiff



Four members of the Jersey Special Gym Club that performed so well at the 2019 Special Olympics World Games in Abu Dhabi this year were invited to meet the Bailiff, with their family and friends, in recognition of their achievements representing Great Britain.
 

 

Also invited were three further gymnasts who competed at  previous World Games in Los Angeles and Athens.

 

They all chatted to the Bailiff and some States members about their experiences, and to show them their medals.

 

Deputy Kevin Pamplin said on Twitter: "Great to catch up and celebrate the success of our brilliant medal-winning ambassadors. A wonderful reminder of what hard work, teamwork, and aiming for your dreams can bring."

 

 

 

 

Christmas Competition photos 2018

Take a look at some images from the final gym competition of the year.

12 medals at British Masters

Four Jersey special gymnasts came home from the Echo Arena in Liverpool after earning 12 medals, at the British Disability Masters.

 

Alex Buesnel won four golds, including taking top position in the All-Round section. There were also medals for James Lang and  Matthew Kirkland, with Aaron Bonner just missing out on bronze in the High Bar.

 

Full Jersey results below.

MAG DISABILITY MASTERS 2018 - ALL ROUND

                   Gold Medal            Alex Buesnel         68.300 
  Bronze medal James Lang 64.150
  Fifth place Matthew Kirkland 53.300
  Sixth place Aaron Bonnar 52.150

MAG DISABILITY MASTERS 2018 - FLOOR

                   Bronze medal       Matthew Kirkland   11.700
  Fourth place Alex Buesnel 11.650
  Sixth place Aaron Bonnar 11.200
  Seventh place James lang 11.200

MAG DISABILITY MASTERS 2018 - POMMEL HORSE

                   Gold Medal            Alex Buesnel         10.650 
  Silver Medal Matthew Kirkland 10.550
  Bronze medal James Lang 10.300

MAG DISABILITY MASTERS 2018 - RINGS

                   Silver Medal           Alex Buesnel        11.050 
  Fourth place James Lang 10.300
  Fifth place Aaron Bonnar 10.200

MAG DISABILITY MASTERS 2018 - PARALLEL BARS

                   Gold Medal            Alex Buesnel         11.900 
  Bronze medal James Lang 10.950
  Fifth place Matthew Kirkland 10.500
  Sixth place Aaron Bonnar 10.050

MAG DISABILITY MASTERS 2018 - BOTH VAULTS

                   Silver Medal            Alex Buesnel         11.000 
  Fourth place James Lang 10.800
  Fifth place Aaron Bonnar 10.500
  Seventh place Matthew Kirkland 10.400

MAG DISABILITY MASTERS 2018 - HIGH BAR

                   Gold Medal            Alex Buesnel         12.050 
  Bronze medal James Lang 10.600
  Fourth place Aaron Bonnar 10.200
  Fifth place Matthew Kirkland 10.150

Medals for entire squad in Poole! 

10 members of the Jersey Special Gymnastics Club competed in the Poole Open Artistic Gymnastics Competition at Rossmore Leisure Centre, and all ten came back with medals.

 

 Chloe, the senior member of the squad, travelled to compete for the first time after an 18-month break for surgery on both knees. She had an outstanding competition, coming home with three medals.
 

For two of the gymnasts, Marc and Monique, it was their first tournament outside Jersey and they both had a great competition and experience. 

  Level Vault Floor Beam/PBars
Chloe Russell Level 1 - U21 Gold Silver Silver
Harry Sinclair Level 1 - U16 Silver Bronze x
Alexandra Wheatley Level 1 - U16 Gold Gold Gold
Anais Martin-Cellier Level 1 - U12 Gold Gold Gold
Liam Timothy Level B - U12 Silver Bronze x
Talia Racjan Level B - U12 Gold Bronze x
Marc Silvester Level B - U12 Silver x x
Isabella Mendes Level A - U9 Silver Bronze x
Monique Gueguen Level 1 - U9 Gold Bronze Gold
Isabella Doucet Level 1 - U9  x Silver Bronze

Tenth British title for Alex Buesnel!

Alex Buesnel with his trophy Alex Buesnel with his trophy

Jersey Special Gymnastic Club’s superstar Alex Buesnel has won the 2017 British Disability Championships Men's Open Title for an unbelievable tenth consecutive year at the National Sports Centre in Lilleshall. 

 

His four team mates at the event also did the club proud. Matthew Kirkland and Aaron Bonnar made it a 1-2-3 with Alex in the Men’s Open, Cailiegh Quail was second overall in the Women’s Senior, while at the ripe old age of 42, Rui Reis won overall Gold in the Senior Men’s B Competition.

The squad of five at Lilleshall

In the Men’s Open, Alex secured Gold medals on all the apparatus, (vault, pommel, rings, floor, high bar and parallel bars) to take the overall title for the tenth consecutive time.

 

Alex’s dad Gary did not hide his pride, saying: “To win one national title is fantastic, to win ten back to back is nothing short of phenomenal!”

Alex on his way to his 10th title Alex on his way to his 10th title

 

 

That is something that has never been achieved before, and surely means that Alex is the greatest disability men's gymnast that Great Britain has ever produced.

 

 

Matthew Kirkland took second place with three Silvers and two Bronze medals, with Aaron Bonnar, who was equal second with only the high bar left, taking third place overall with two Silvers and two Bronze.

 

Head coach Yana Vibert thought that those second and third positions were well deserved. “Both boys have worked really hard this year with both putting many more new skills into their routines.” 

MEN'S OPEN Floor Pom Ring Vault P Bar H Bar Total
1 Alex Buesnel 12.400 10.850 11.100 11.150 10.950 10.900 67.350
2 Matthew Kirkland 10.950 10.500 8.750 10.650 10.500 8.700 60.050
3 Aaron Bonnar 11.350 10.000 9.700 10.650 9.650 7.550 58.900

In taking second place overall in the Women’s Senior Open, Cailiegh Quail won six silvers against a long standing competitor from Glasgow, Georgia Carslow.

 

Rui Reis competed in the Senior Men's Competition B and amassed a really impressive five Golds and two Silvers. At 42 years old, Rui was competing against men half his age but he showed his dominance winning overall Gold.

 

 

Please note that all previous Special Gymnastics stories are now in the two Special Gymnastics Archives section. Click on the appropriate link from the list of sections on the left hand side of this page.

Print Print | Sitemap
© Jersey Sports Association for the Disabled