Former Olympic swimming gold medallist Rebecca Adlington suffers late miscarriage

23 October 2023, 05:43 | Updated: 23 October 2023, 05:45

Rebecca Adlington has suffered a miscarriage
Rebecca Adlington has suffered a miscarriage. Picture: Getty/Alamy

By Kit Heren

Former Olympic swimmer Rebecca Adlington has suffered a late miscarriage.

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Rebecca shared the news with her followers on Sunday evening that she had given birth to a daughter named Harper on Friday evening.

The Olympic gold medallist wrote on Instagram: "I don't really have the words right now but unfortunately we went for our 20 week scan this week and they discovered no heartbeat.

"I gave birth to our angel, Harper on Friday at 7pm. We held her, and had time with her.

"We will forever love and remember her always."

Read more: 'Devastating': Olympian Rebecca Adlington shares heartbreak of miscarriage and 'emergency surgery'

Read more: Five people fall ill every day after swimming in Britain's polluted waters, as Feargal Sharkey reveals brush with death

Rebecca also thanked the staff at Wythenshawe hospital in Manchester, as well as her husband Andy for his "selfless support, love and help".

She said she "couldn't have survived without him".

Rebecca said: "I don't have the strength or words right now, and don't feel ready to share this news.

"However, I can't pretend to be OK or fake a smile. I can't have people ask me how pregnancy is or when I am due as I still look pregnant."

Her friends sent messages of support after reading the sad news.

Rebecca Adlington won two swimming golds in 2008
Rebecca Adlington won two swimming golds in 2008. Picture: Getty

Former Olympic long jump champion Greg Rutherford said: "Sending love to you. So sorry to read this Becky xx."

Jessica Ennis-Hill said: "Oh Becky I’m sending you and your family so much love. I’m so sorry xxxx."

It comes just a year after Rebecca suffered a miscarriage after 12 weeks of pregnancy, which meant she needed emergency surgery.

She is already mother to seven-year-old daughter Summer from her first marriage to fellow former competitive swimmer Harry Needs, and one-year-old son Albie with Andy, whom she married in 2021.

Rebecca won two gold medals in swimming events at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, aged just 19. She won two bronzes four years later in London, before retiring from competitive swimming aged 23.

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