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Last Updated: Tuesday, 14 December, 2004, 10:33 GMT
Champion swimmer finally honoured
Jennie Fletcher
Jennie won a gold medal in the 1912 Olympics
A swimmer who set 11 world records but has been largely unrecognised in the UK has been honoured in her hometown.

Jennie Fletcher, who was born in 1890 in Leicester, won 20 major titles in the early part of the 20th Century.

Although she became a member of the International Swimming Hall of Fame in 1971 in Florida, she is not well known in her home country.

Leicester City Council has now unveiled a plaque in her honour at Cossington Street Baths.

Olympic champion

Jennie, who died in 1968 aged 78, was English swimming champion six times and was undefeated between 1906 and 1909.

At 18 she was due to compete in the 1908 Olympic Games in London, but her event was cancelled because of a lack of competitors.

She went on to win an Olympic gold medal at the 1912 games in Stockholm as part of the Great Britain 4x100 freestyle relay team.

She emigrated to Canada where she had a daughter and five sons.

Her daughter Betty Smith said she was thrilled that her mother's home town was marking her achievements.

She added: "She was so modest and if her career was discussed, she'd say, 'Oh, that was a long time ago and I did it because I just loved to swim.'"


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