Biographies of the Team
Find out more about the team behind Ability Consultancy
Claire has the passion and drive to ensure that every disabled person has the opportunity to live, learn and earn like the rest of the population. She is dedicated to ensuring that future generations of disabled people do not have to experience what she did.
Claire was born with Hemiplegic Cerebral Palsy. Her childhood was a challenge, as she was bullied in school for being different. This resulted in educational underachievement, and a lack of confidence and self-esteem. However, her passion and enthusiasm for sport was always present and at the age of 16 she got involved in athletics. To put it simply this changed her life!
Claire is a retired GB Para Athlete who represented GB at IPC World and European level. She achieved podium positions at the CPISRA World Games and European Championships, and held many national records during her career. She achieved the UK qualification standards for the Sydney 2000 and Athens 2004 Paralympic Games, but missed out on a place in the final team.
Claire is a graduate of Manchester Metropolitan University gaining a BA(Hons) In Business Management and Sport Studies. She completed this while training full time and becoming a level II athletics coach.
After graduating she continued to train full time and work as a special needs multi-sports coach. She ended leading all the special schools’ PE lessons in her local area. It wasn’t just about the coaching for Claire, it was training and teaching the staff how to adapt many sports. This would allow all pupils to take part no matter of their individual needs.
She continued to develop her skills in roles as a Sports Development Officer in Cumbria and as a Club Coach Support Officer at England Athletics. During her first year at England Athletics she was (and still is) the first person to complete her Level III Performance coach athletics qualifications based on Para sport – she had to demonstrate her reasoning behind her adaptions more than other coaches on her course but in the end she was commended for her obvious knowledge of Para sport. Claire was the lead officer in the North for Para Athletics, writing and delivering workshops, conference seminars, club and schools visits to deliver inclusive sports and coach education sessions such as an intro to disability, Para sport made simple, guide running workshop, and club development sessions looking at clubs’ inclusivity structure.
In her spare time, she continues to coach para-athletics, coaching a GB Junior to World Champion in 2014. In 2013 Claire became a national classifier and is now a lead classifier. She hopes to become an international classifier in the future. In 2015 she had the honour of being Team Manager for the England Team at the CPISRA World Games.
Claire has the determination to ensure that everyone is treated fairly and not discriminated against. She is a strong advocate of equality and diversity and bringing disability into everyone’s agenda so it is not seen as an afterthought or chore. This leads to every person or business doing what is needed to be accessible and inclusive for all their customers or clients. She uses her life experiences, is honest, open and an inspiration to all who meet and work with her.