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Double Olympic gold medallist Heather Stanning announces rowing retirement

Stanning (right) and pairs partner Helen Glover Photo: PA Images

Somerset's double Olympic rowing champion Heather Stanning, has announced her retirement from the sport, at the age of 31.

Stanning (who's from Yeovil) and partner Helen Glover dominated the womens' pairs event in the build up to London 2012 - won there and haven't lost since.

Heather Stanning is:

  • 2x Olympic Champion
  • 2x World Champion
  • 4x World Cup Champion
  • 2x European Champion

Together Heather and Helen are:

  • World record holders
  • Olympic record holders
  • World Cup record holders
  • European record holders
  • Reigning Olympic champions
  • Reigning World champions
  • Reigning European champions
Selection day for the Olympic Games in Rio 2016 Credit: ITV West Country

This year the pair made history as they became the first female British athletes to win back to back Olympic gold medals.

They secured their 39th consecutive win in Rio spanning five years in the final of the women's pairs.

The defending champions smiled as wide as the margin they won by! Credit: PA Images

Heather is a Royal Artillery officer in the army and was given special dispensation from the army in 2010 to pursue an Olympic career.

She began her illustrious rowing career at Bath University in 2006 and returned in 2016 to join the Hall of Fame for Sport.

She started rowing under the GB Start Programme - it's where she first rowed with Helen Glover in the women’s pair.

Heather was recently made a member of Bath University's Hall of Fame Credit: ITV West Country

The pair trained at West Country rowing club, Minerva. The club have supported them throughout both Olympic campaigns.

Supporters at Minerva Rowing Club Credit: ITV West Country

Promoted to Major in the summer, she will now return to full-time soldiering.