Dorothy Hey

Biographical information

RolesCompeted in Olympic Games
Full nameDorothy•Hey (-Webster)
Used nameDorothy•Hey
Born1931 in Bradford, England (GBR)
Died9 September 2015 in Bradford, England (GBR)
AffiliationsSaltaire Gym Club, Bradford (GBR)
NOC Great Britain


Dorothy Hey was one of four Saltaire gymnasts to finish in the top six at the first post-World War II national gymnastics championship. Hey, who was just 16 at the time, finished sixth, and was subsequently one of four Saltaire members selected for the 1948 Olympics, the others being Irene Hirst, Audrey Rennard, and the 1936 Olympian, Clarice Bell (née Hanson). The British women’s team coach, Carrie Pollard (née Pickles), was also from Saltaire. The British women finished ninth in the all-round team competition.

In 1949, Hey was a member of the Saltaire team that won the British Drill Team Championship. She married local cricketer Derek Webster in 1952 and was originally chosen for the Helsinki Olympics that year. However, due to work commitments as a hairdresser, she could not attend a training weekend at Cardiff, and pulled out of the squad. She was asked if she was willing to be a non-travelling reserve, which she agreed to. However, after Pat Hirst developed glandular trouble after arriving in Helsinki, Dorothy got a last-minute call to travel to Finland, just six days before the start of gymnastics events. Hirst eventually recovered, and took part, leaving Hey side-lined.

After marrying Webster, and having a family, Derek and Dorothy moved away from their native Yorkshire to work on farms around the country, only to return to their roots in the 1970s. Their son John was an international speed skater, while another son was a successful local footballer.


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1948 Summer Olympics Artistic Gymnastics (Gymnastics) GBR Dorothy Hey
Team All-Around, Women (Olympic) Great Britain 9