Name of the Game

The votes are in and alumni and supporters of the University have chosen to name the gym at our new sports centre after alumna and four-time World Ironman Champion Chrissie Wellington.

NOTG-Chrissie-Wellington 900x375We ran the Name of the Game competition to give students, staff and the general public the chance to name the gym within 360 Sport & Fitness, our new £55 million sports centre, after a regional sporting hero.

Chrissie was up against local girl and Paralympian swimmer Ellie Simmonds and former England and Warwickshire fast bowler Gladstone Small.

Chrissie, who graduated with a First Class Degree in Geography from the University in 1998, was a clear winner with 43 per cent of votes, while Gladstone picked up 29 per cent in second place and Ellie 28 per cent.

World Ironman Champion in 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2011, with two world records to boot, Chrissie was voted 'Sunday Times Sportswoman of the Year' in 2009 and in 2010 was awarded an MBE, as well as being honoured with a Doctorate from the University. She was also recently honoured with an OBE.

During her time at Birmingham Chrissie was also captain of the University Swimming Team, and carried out volunteer work in the local community. She gave the following message to all her voters:

'Chrissie's Gym' will be based inside the new 13,200m² sports centre, which opens later this year and will provide students, staff and the wider Birmingham community with the opportunity to use a range of first class facilities. Below is an artist's impression of the new facility (image © So Vibrant).

GymVisual720x375The Name of the Game competition was run by the Development and Alumni Relations Office. Voting was free online or cost £1 by text message. All proceeds raised were donated to the Circles of Influence campaign, which raised £193.4 million for 250 University projects, from the construction of the sports centre to pioneering research.

  • You can find out more about our three sports stars below and browse through our news stories from the competition period.
  • One of our students designed a Flash-based browser game exclusively for Name of the Game - have a go and see how you get on!
  • We are delighted to offer our alumni and friends of the University the chance to have a transformative impact on some truly life-changing projects. Thank you for your support.

Ellie Simmonds


Britain’s golden girl – World Record breaking Paralympic champion

Gladstone Small


England cricketer - the nicest man to ever bowl fast for a living

Chrissie Wellington


Four time World Ironman Champion, World Record Holder and big smiler