WELSH gymnast and entrepreneur Joe Cemlyn-Jones is back in his grandfather’s homeland this weekend hoping to do the business on the European stage after mixing it with the world’s best.

The Northern European Championships return to Wales for the first time since 2009, and 22-year-old Cemlyn-Jones will be one of seven stars from the host country going for glory.

As well as bettering the second place he recorded in the all-around at the previous edition of the event in 2019, Cemlyn-Jones is desperate for the Welsh men to upgrade the team silver won last time out.

Cemlyn-Jones, who also won two individual golds and bronzes two years ago, is joined in the Wales team by Rio Olympian Brinn Bevan, Emil Barber, Jacob Edwards, Benji Eyre and Alex Niscoveanu – Holly Jones is the sole Welsh gymnast in the women’s competition.

“It’s pretty much the same men’s team as last time and we’re looking to go one better this time,” said Cemlyn-Jones. “We’re not settling for second again.”

Born in Bristol to parents Kate and Jim, Cemlyn-Jones qualifies for Wales through his paternal grandfather.

Morys Wynne Cemlyn-Jones, a doctor in Conwy who relocated to the West Country from Anglesey, served with the Royal Welch Fusiliers in the Second World War.

“He would have loved to see what I’m doing,” said his grandson. “He would have loved to see me in the Wales team – it’s what I’m doing it for.”

Having previously trained in Barnstaple, Cemlyn-Jones made the switch to the City of Birmingham club, meaning the 2022 Commonwealth Games will be right on his doorstep.

After last month’s World Championships in Japan, a first Commonwealths is the next big target in the sights of the gymnast who also runs an online Lego shop.

“I’ve just got back from the World Championships which were my first major event,” he said.

“It was a very good experience. I enjoyed every moment out there and got the chance to compete alongside some great guys.

“Unfortunately, I split the palm of my hand two days before and needed a few stitches.

“I wasn’t able train at all before the competition. Even warming up on the day, I couldn’t practise on the apparatus because I was in so much pain.

“But it’s all good now and I’m ready to go for the Northern Europeans.”

He continued: “The Commonwealth Games is the big aim for next year, making the squad first and then looking to get a team medal.

“The Olympics is my all-time goal, Paris 2024 and Los Angeles 2028.”

With a competition this weekend, Cemlyn-Jones will have to put his business interests on hold for a few days.

It’s nearly three years since he set-up his Lego enterprise – JCJ-BRICKS – on eBay, and the venture has gone from strength to strength.

“It’s coming up to Christmas so sales are picking up!” said Cemlyn-Jones, who buys used Lego, spruces it up and then sells it on.

“Obviously, I enjoyed playing with Lego as a kid and I always said I wanted to be something to do with Lego.

“It started about three years ago when I had a lot of Lego and wanted to sell it, and once I sold it I realised I could make a lot of money, so I began bringing in more stock and it developed from there.

“I didn’t really plan for it to develop like it has, but it all fell into place and just kept getting bigger and bigger.

“Me and my mum run it from my parents’ house in Bristol and it’s grown so much now that I think we’ll need some staff to help with all the orders.”

And, as Cemlyn-Jones explains, it can be a lucrative business.

“It’s about knowing what is out there and what you could find,” he added.

“There’s a Darth Vader figure that sells for more than £200 and I bought 20 of them for £80 each.

“You really need to understand the market and what pieces go for, and to spot things that go for a lot of money.

“You need to keep your eyes out for the items that have been discontinued, that are not made any more or are pretty rare.

“I’ve sold more than 2,000 1kg boxes and sell Lego all over the world. It earns me more money than I get from being a gymnast.

“But I love being a professional gymnast and I’m really grateful for being able to do what I do.”