Gymnast hopes to play a blinder and peak at Birmingham Commonwealth Games

Gymnast hopes to play a blinder and peak at Birmingham Commonwealth Games

One of the UK’s most promising gymnasts is aiming to vault his way into the spotlight by winning medals on a global stage.

17-year-old Cameron Lister from Suffolk has been training at Pipers Vale Gymnastic Club in Ipswich since the age of two.

During this time, he has gained two national Scottish titles and is now putting all his energy into competing at the 2022 Commonwealth Games that will take place in Birmingham.

The youngster currently studies on a full time level three sports course at the College, works part time at a local gym and trains (on average) 28 hours a week.

A feat that the head of sport and public services at Suffolk New College - Lee Mandley - believes is worthy of some recognition.

Mr Mandley, said, “The effort Cameron puts into college and gymnastics is worth celebrating in my opinion. He is a distinction student, works hard in his career and his training regime is virtually like a full time job. We will help him as much as he needs and it’s great for us as a college - and for our students - to see what it takes to become an elite athlete. We are phenomenally proud of him.”

Cameron’s parents first spotted his potential at a very young age. Cameron explains;

“When I was a kid I had lots of energy, I was brave, fearless and was always jumping off cabinets. At that time, it was the Olympics in Athens and my mum and dad thought that I needed to do exercise in a more controlled environment. So they took me to a local gym (Pipers Vale) and I’ve been there ever since.”

The all-round gymnast has worked his way through the ranks to a national level and competes in all of the gymnastic disciplines – from floor work to the pommel horse via the bars, the high bar, the rings and the vault.

His biggest achievements to date is winning the Scottish National Championships (twice) and he has represented Scotland for the last four years, qualifying for this nation because his dad’s side of the family are from Inverness.

All his energy is focussed on continuing to gain titles with Scotland and to qualify for the Commonwealth Games in 2022. “To win a gold medal at these games would be a real tearjerker. I’d have lots of support from family, friends and the nation as a whole because the tournament would be in the UK - so if I won and they played the anthem it would be an emotional time for everyone.”

So, if you did do well at the Commonwealth Games, would you have a chance of becoming a member of Team GB at the Olympics in 2024 that will take place in Paris?

“I’ve competed against some of the world’s best and done OK so never say never in terms of the Olympics. Team GB has already earmarked a team for these games already though – so it will be hard to break into that squad - but anything is achievable.”

Although he competes for Scotland, Cameron has been raised in Suffolk and credits many people from the county for his success so far.

He said, “My coaches at Pipers Vale have believed in me and supported my development. The college support has been fantastic and my family and friends have been superb. I’ve got an awesome team behind me. I owe this county a lot”

Cameron currently does not have any financial support in helping him to realise his dreams and he is keen to be an ambassador for local companies and schools to inspire others to realise their sporting ambitions.

“It would be great to have some sponsorship as my family and I have spent tens of thousands of pounds over the years supporting my ambitions. I’d be happy to help promote local businesses in any way they wanted,” he added.

If you would like to support Cameron – you can email him via