Honorary graduates

Bill Furniss2009

Mr Bill Furniss

Honorary Degree of Doctor of Science in recognition of his guidance and stewardship for a whole generation of international swimmers and as an inspiring ambassador for sport.


Bill Furniss is an outstandingly gifted and successful swimming coach. He is Chief coach of Nova Centurion, the competitive outlet of the Nottinghamshire County Council Swim Squad. His contribution to the sport was recognised last year by the British Swimming Coaches and Teachers Association who made him Coach of the Year. His crowning success to date is in coaching the double Olympic and World gold medallist, and World Record holder, Rebecca Adlington.

He has also jointly coached Paralympic gold medallist and World Record holder Sam Hynd and Paralympic swimmer Charlotte Henshaw, and coached Olympic swimmer Jessica Sylvester. These are among the many Nova Centurion athletes who have participated in 15 World Championships, eight World Student games, six commonwealth games and 25 European Championships since Bill became chief coach in 1980. Under his care, NTU students have swum at Olympic, Paralympic, World and European level, and he and Nova swimmers have participated in the University's Sport and Exercise Science research work.

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