The Sydney 1938 British Empire Games - We Are England
The Sydney 1938 British Empire Games
Hamilton 1930 with background

The Sydney 1938 British Empire Games

England's first ever trip down under saw the nation lose its grip on the top of the medals table.

A logistically difficult Games for England meant a considerably smaller team (60 less than London) that inevitably returned with fewer medals. As a result, host nation Australia took full advantage to overtake their rivals in the medals table and record their first victory. The Opening Ceremony, taking place at the world-famous Sydney Cricket Ground, attracted more than 40,000 spectators, proving the Games' popularity.

With tough competition and that smaller number of athletes, England found it difficult to make their mark in athletics, in which four years earlier they had performed so well. Cyril Holmes' two gold medals and Olympic silver medallist Dorothy Odam's high jump title were the main highlights.

In aquatics Doug Tomalin improved upon his silver medal successes in London to win gold in the high diving event, whilst in the pool Doris Storey, John Davies and Bob Leivers each won double gold.

It would be the last Games for 12 years owing to the outbreak of World War II.