Tokyo 2020 silver medallist Ben Whittaker becomes unofficial ‘Mayor of Wolverhampton’

The British light heavyweight made his dream come true after swapping his Olympic silver medal for the chains of office in his hometown for one day.

By Andrew Binner
Picture by 2021 Getty Images

Any crooks in the town of Wolverhampton in the United Kingdom better watch out, as Olympic boxing star Ben Whittaker is temporarily in charge of keeping law and order.

Fresh from winning a silver medal in the light heavyweight division at Tokyo 2020, the 24-year-old got to spend one day as the unofficial mayor of his hometown.

Whittaker said in a post-bout interview during the Olympics that it would be ‘a dream come true’ to land the job.

The city council granted his wish on Sunday (23 August), organising a list of official engagements for him to attend, complete with the official ceremonial dress.

"I feel like royalty!” Whittaker said of his new uniform before adding: "I suffered with ADHD. So kids who are struggling with things, it can show that you do not have to be a classroom whiz-kid, you can go through any route of life."

Whittaker trained as  a boxer in Wolverhampton, and was given the official chains of office to wear as travelled the town for a day, inspiring young people in the city.

At one stage he even got in a ring with the real mayor, Greg Brackenridge - a former boxer himself, for a photo shoot.

Whittaker’s day finished with an invitation to be the guest of honour at English Premier League football side Wolverhampton Wanderers’ match against Tottenham Hotspur.

The Olympian plans to turn professional in the new year, and will continue to provide inspiration for Wolverhampton.

"Hopefully I can start bringing back some world titles for the kids to hold as well as the medal,” he said.