Colette Thomson MBE receives honorary doctorate

Colette Thomson MBE has today (8 December) received an honorary doctorate from the University of Birmingham. 

Alumna Thomson, who was honoured with the Lifetime Achievement Award at the university’s sports awards in 2019, is known for her determination and passion for the sport and has been successful in her career as both a player and a coach.  

After making her debut in 1975, she went on to represent her country 89 times, including four appearances at World Netball Championships. 

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Since journeying into coaching, netballers at all levels of the game have benefitted from her wealth of knowledge and experience. 

She has been coach of Premier League outfit Linden Netball Club for more than four decades, supporting many athletes, including Vitality Roses Beth Cobden and Layla Guscoth, on their journeys to the international stage. 

Thomson has also coached within the Vitality Netball Superleague, most recently as Assistant Coach with Wasps. 

After joining the senior national coaching setup in 2011, Thomson made a huge impact on the sport.  

She was part of the team that saw England secure a historic gold at the 2018 Commonwealth Games and then once again deliver a podium finish at the Vitality Netball World Cup 2019. 

Since July 2021, Thomson has been working as Assistant Coach for England’s U21s alongside Victoria Burgess. 

Discussing Thomson’s success and receipt of the honorary degree, England Netball Performance Director David Parsons said: “It’s a fantastic achievement and well-deserved recognition for her career as both an athlete and a coach. 

“The impact she has had on the game and the development of so many netballers and coaches at all levels is second to none and her legacy is clear for all to see. 

“Everyone at England Netball (EN) is incredibly proud of Colette and congratulate her on this brilliant achievement.” 

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