MI6 spy found dead was a cyclist

Gareth Williams competed in road races and time trials

Gareth Williams competes in the 2008 national hill climb championships, where he finished 36th

The body of a British MI6 worker found dead in a sports bag on Monday was a keen cyclist.


Gareth Williams, 30, rode for Holyhead CC and Cheltenham & County CC (he is not the same Gareth Williams that rides for Cherry Valley RT). He competed regularly in road races and time trials. He was an accomplished climber, finishing 29th and 36th in the 2006 and 2008 UK national hill climb championships.

Most of his cycling peers knew him, but not well. Cheltenham & County CC member Charles Zanettacci told BikeRadar that Williams:  “…regularly rode the Cheltenham club time trials on Thursday evenings and sometimes came out on the chaingangs. He always rode fixed on the time trials.

“He was quietly spoken and unassuming, kept himself to himself really.”

Williams worked as a communications officer for GCHQ (Government Communications Headquarters) in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire. GCHQ is responsible for intercepting and deciphering messages that may be of interest to the UK’s national security. It works closely with UK security agencies MI5 and MI6.

According to newspaper reports, Williams had been in London on secondment to MI6 for the past year, although he was due to return to Cheltenham next week.


His body was discovered in a holdall in a bath in his Pimlico, London flat. He may have been strangled, although police have yet to unravel all the details of his mysterious and gruesome death.