Bolton Metro Swimming Squad star Mark Tompsett will make his Paralympics debut this summer after being picked to represent Team GB in Paris.

The 17-year-old, who competes in the S14 classification - for swimmers with an intellectual impairment - due to his autism has seen his stock rise rapidly and recently became champion at the 2024 Para Swimming European Open Championships in Madeira, in the men’s S14 100m backstroke.

Now the youngster, from Chorley, is set to realise his dream of competing at the highest level after being named in a 26-strong para-swimming team representing GB.

One of 15 debutants in the squad, Tompsett will be hoping to help Team GB improve on their 26 medals in the pool at the rescheduled Tokyo 2020 Games, in 2021.

The teenager said: “It is a huge honour to represent GB.

“I’ve worked really hard for this opportunity. I am really excited about my swimming journey and my first paralympic games in Paris this summer.”

Proud mum Nicola added: “All of Mark’s efforts have paid off.

“I couldn’t be prouder of him and all the amazing and inspirational athletes that he will be joining in Paris. Go paralympic GB.”

Tompsett’s inaugural appearance for Para Team GB came in Aberdeen, in February, at the Para World series event where he secured a bronze medal in the mixed classification in 100m backstroke, bronze in the 100m Free Junior, gold in the junior 100m backstroke and gold as the highest point scorer for GB in the 100m backstroke.

The youngster swims all strokes but excels in backstroke, and he currently holds S14 British records in 100m and 200m backstroke long course and 200m backstroke short course.

Tompsett’s success continued when Aquatics GB held Olympic swimming trials over a week at the Olympic pool in London last month, where he secured a nomination time in the S14 100m backstroke for the Paralympics - an important step towards this week’s team selection.

Talking about the 26-strong squad, Aquatics GB associate performance director Tim Jones said: “Our athlete cohort has evolved significantly since the Tokyo Games, and with 15 first-time Paralympians on the team, we know we have great potential to be very successful in Paris.

“Amongst our more experienced team members we’ve also seen some positive performance developments across this cycle to build on results from the past.

“We travel to the Games with a high quality group of well-supported swimmers from a diverse range of training locations, which is testament to the hard work and commitment from a large number of clubs and their coaches.

“With the team now unveiled, we will forge ahead in the coming months with the comprehensive plans we have put in place for this important pre-Games preparation phase, and I have every confidence we will arrive in Paris ready to deliver our best possible performance.”

ParalympicsGB Chef de Mission, Penny Briscoe, added: “Our 26 swimmers represent an exciting mix of youth and experience, and there’s no doubt they all have fantastic potential to make Great Britain proud in Paris this summer.

“I’m really excited to see the ParalympicsGB team start to take shape and look forward to welcoming athletes from all corners of the UK, across 19 sports in total, in the coming weeks and months.”

A total of around 230 athletes from 19 sports are expected to make up the British team that will compete in Paris, with further names to be announced by ParalympicsGB in the next few weeks.

At Tokyo 2020 ParalympicsGB won medals across a record breaking 18 different sports - the highest number of any nation ever.

ParalympicsGB finished second on the medal table with 124 medals overall, including 41 gold, 38 silver and 45 bronze.