Donna Hartley

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Donna Hartley-Wass, born Donna-Marie Louise Murray and formerly known as Donna Hartley (born 1 May 1955[1]) is a British athlete.

She was born in Southampton, England in 1955. She was a south of England sprint champion, and won the AAA's 200 metres in 1972 then the 400 metres in 75. In 1977 she was U.K. 400 metres champion. In 1977 she married fellow athlete Bill Hartley. The marriage later ended in divorce.

In 1978, she won two Commonwealth gold medals in Edmonton, Canada. Where she won the 400 metres,[2] and the 4x400 relay. In 1979 she was European cup semi finalist winner in both 400, and 400 relay again. She also was runner up in European cup finals in 1975, and 1977 in 400, and 400 relay again.

In 1980, she competed at the Moscow Olympic Games where she won a Bronze medal in the 4 x 400 relay.[1]


Career after athletics

After retiring from athletics Hartley married comedian and actor Bobby Knutt and as Donna Hartley-Wass competed for several years on the UK women's body building circuit. Wass was Knutt's real name. Hartley-Wass won the National Amateur Body Building Association's "Miss Britain Physique" trophy in 1988, having placed third the previous year.[3] Her bodybuilding career was short-lived and for several years after that she ran a Line Dancing School in Sheffield near the family home. Hartley-Wass featured on the front cover of Health & Strength Magazine.[4]


Donna trained at a Sheffield health studio jointly owned by Bobby Knutt and Marti Caine, another local television and stage comedienne.

Under the guidance of the health studio manager Peter Ormondroyd, himself a national junior bodybuilder, Donna achieved national success very quickly on the women's Bodybuilding circuit.

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