Progress Wrestling
AcronymProgress
Founded2011
StyleProfessional wrestling
Sports entertainment
HeadquartersLondon, United Kingdom
Founder(s)Jim Smallman
Jon Briley
Owner(s)Lee McAteer
Martyn Best
WebsiteProgressWrestling.com

Progress Wrestling (stylized as PROGRESS) is a British professional wrestling promotion that was established in 2011 by comedian Jim Smallman, events and comedy promoter Jon Briley, and later, actor Glen Robinson (professionally known as Glen Joseph).

History

PROGRESS was conceived by Jim Smallman and Jon Briley in 2011, who were both massive wrestling fans. Smallman is a big fan of "Strong style" wrestling, Japanese in particular, and Briley was Smallman's agent.[1]

In 2015, PROGRESS appeared for five nights at Download Festival.[2] In December of that year, they began running regular shows at The Ritz in Manchester.[3] On 30 September 2018, PROGRESS Wrestling held "Hello Wembley" at the SSE Arena. Billed by the promotion as the largest independent wrestling show in England for 30 years, the event drew 4,750 people; making it the most attended event in PROGRESS Wrestling history.[4]

In 2016, the company began working relationships with other promotions. At Chapter 29 on 24 April in London, PROGRESS hosted two qualifying matches for the WWE Cruiserweight Classic.[5] In 2017, PROGRESS wrestlers such as Pete Dunne, Tyler Bate, Trent Seven, and Mark Andrews participated in the WWE United Kingdom Championship Tournament, culminating in Bate being crowned the first ever WWE UK Champion.[citation needed]

Smallman left PROGRESS at the end of 2019 after Chapter 100. In June 2020, PROGRESS would be affected by reports of sexual harassment in the British independent circuit. After several accusations, PROGRESS decided to no longer work with David Starr, Travis Banks, and El Ligero, as well as suspending indefinitely then- Tag team Champions Jordan Devlin and Scotty Davis, who vacated the titles.[6] Ring announcer and creative team member Matt Richards also left the promotion.[7] On 21 June 2020, it was announced that Glen Joseph was stepping down with Michael Oku, Vicky Haskins and James Amner all taking prominent roles in the company.[8]

In 2021, PROGRESS announced its return admist the COVID-19 pandemic, travelling to South London to set up a temporary home at Theatre Peckham for Chapter 104: Natural Progression on 20 February, eventually producing 23 shows behind closed doors which featured on the WWE Network. On 31st December that year, ahead of their return to live shows in January 2022, it was announced that PROGRESS had been acquired by Lee McAteer and Martyn Best - taking over ownership from Briley.

Demand Progress

Demand Progress is Progress' Pivotshare-based video-on-demand service that launced in March 2015.[9] January 2017 saw the first episode of Freedom's Road, a new series from Progress which would feature matches taped specifically for the show and have a heavy focus on characters and plots.[10]

Championships

Current champions

Championship Current champion(s) Reign Date won Days held Defenses Location Notes
Progress World Championship Vacant 1 15 May 2022 London, England
Progress Tag Team Championship The 0121
(Dan Moloney and Man Like DeReiss)
1
(1, 1)
March 25th, 2022 56+ 0 London, England Defeated four other teams including champions Smokin' Aces (Charlie Sterling and Nick Riley) in a gauntlet match at Chapter 131: 10th Anniversary Show.
Progress Women's Championship Gisele Shaw 1 August 14th 2021 279+ 5 Sheffield, England Gisele Shaw defeated Alexxis Falcon and Mercedez Blaze in a triple threat elimination match for the vacant title at Chapter 117: Making Diamonds.
Progress Atlas Championship Luke Jacobs 1 April 18th, 2022 32+ 0 London Defeated Jonah at Chapter 133: Stop Motion Skeleton Battle to win the reactivated title.

Inactive championships

Championship Date introduced Date retired Last champion Notes
Progress Proteus Championship 21 July 2019 24 February 2021 Paul Robinson Retired after champion Robinson left Progress.

Progress World Women's Championship

Progress World Women's Championship[11]
Details
Date established28 May 2017
Current champion(s)Gisele Shaw
Date won14 August 2021
Other name(s)
Progress Women's Championship

It was announced on 24 April 2016, that Natural Progression Series IV would crown the first Progress Worlds Women's Champion. The tournament got underway in October 2016, with the champion to be crowned during the Super Strong Style 16 Tournament Edition 2017 weekend from 27 May 2017 to 29 May 2017. At the conclusion of the tournament at day two of the Super Strong Style 16 Tournament Edition 2016 weekend, Toni Storm was crowned the first Progress Women's Champion. As of May 20, 2022, there have been six reigns between five champions.

Reigns

Key
No. Overall reign number
Reign Reign number for the specific champion
Days Number of days held
Defenses Number of successful defenses
+ Current reign is changing daily
No. Champion Championship change Reign statistics Notes Ref.
Date Event Location Reign Days Defenses
1 Toni Storm 28 May 2017 Chapter 49: Super Strong Style 16 Camden Town, London 1 581 14 Defeated Jinny and Laura Di Matteo in three-way match in tournament final to become the inaugural champion. [12][13]
2 Jinny 20 May 2018 Chapter 69: Be Here Now Manchester, England 1 224 6 [14]
3 Jordynne Grace 30 December 2018 Chapter 82: Unboxing Live, A Dukla Prague Away Kit Camden Town, London, England 1 259 9 [15]
4 Meiko Satomura 15 September 2019 Chapter 95: Still Chasing Haringey, London, England 1 91 1 [16]
5 Jinny 15 December 2019 Chapter 99: With a Flake, Please Sheffield, England 2 482 2 [17]
Vacated 10 April 2021 Vacated after Jinny was unable to commit to future dates, due to COVID-19 restrictions.
6 Kanji 8 May 2021 Chapter 111: One Leg in the Air Sheffield, England 1 84 3 Kanji defeated Gisele Shaw in a Two out of Three falls match series of matches with 2-1 in total. [18]
Vacated 14 August 2021 Vacated after Kanji sustained an arm injury that would require surgery.
7 Gisele Shaw 14 August 2021 Chapter 117: Making Diamonds Sheffield, England 1 279+ 3 Defeated Alexxis Falcon and Mercedez Blaze in a three-way elimination match to win the vacant title. [19]

Combined reigns

Indicates the current champion
Rank Wrestler No. of
reigns
Combined
defenses
Combined days
1 Jinny 2 8 706
2 Toni Storm 1 14 357
3 Gisele Shaw 1 3 279+
4 Jordynne Grace 1 9 259
5 Meiko Satomura 1 1 91
6 Kanji 1 3 84

Progress Atlas Championship

Progress Atlas Championship[20]
Details
PromotionProgress Wrestling
Date established25 September 2016
Current champion(s)Luke Jacobs
Date won18 April 2022

The Progress Atlas Championship is a professional wrestling championship created and promoted by the British professional wrestling promotion Progress Wrestling. Initially, the title was destinated exclusively for wrestlers weighing over 205 pounds (the cruiserweight weight limit) in weight. Rampage Brown was the first champion after winning a tournament. There have been a total of eight reigns shared between five different official champions.

On 27 February 2019, Progress announced that there would be a unification match between the Atlas and World championships at Super Strong Style 16 on 5 May of that year, with Walter winning and thus unifying the two titles.[21] On 21 July 2019, Progress announced that the Atlas Championship had been retired, to be replaced with the upcoming Proteus Championship. Luke Jacobs is the current champion in his first reign. He defeated Jonah in a tournament final to reactivated title at Chapter 133: Stop Motion Skeleton Battle on 18 April 2022, in Camden Town, London.

Reigns

Key
No. Overall reign number
Reign Reign number for the specific champion
Days Number of days held
Defenses Number of successful defenses
+ Current reign is changing daily
No. Champion Championship change Reign statistics Notes Ref.
Date Event Location Reign Days Defenses
1 Rampage Brown 25 September 2016 Chapter 36: We're Gonna Need a Bigger Room... Again Brixton, London 1 112 3 Defeated Joe Coffey in a tournament final to crown the inaugural champion. [22][23]
2 Matt Riddle 15 January 2017 Chapter 42: Life, the Universe and Wrestling Birmingham, England 1 175 9 [24]
3 Walter 9 July 2017 Chapter 51: Screaming For Progress': Birmingham, England 1 34 1 [25]
4 Matt Riddle 12 August 2017 Progress: New York City New York City, NY 2 29 0 [26]
5 Walter 10 September 2017 Chapter 55: Chase the Sun Haringey, London 2 238 2 This was a three-way match, also involving Timothy Thatcher. [27]
Vacated 21 July 2019 Chapter 68: Super Strong Style 16 Haringey, London Walter voluntarily vacated the title.
6 Doug Williams 20 May 2018 Chapter 69: Be Here Now Manchester, England 1 133 2 This was a four-way match for the vacant title, which involving Joseph Conners, Rampage Brown and Rob Lynch. [14]
7 Trent Seven 30 September 2018 Chapter 76: Hello Wembley Wembley, London 1 294 6 [28]
8 Walter 5 May 2019 Chapter 88: Super Strong Style 16 Haringey, London 3 77 1 Upon Walter's victory, the title was unified with the Progress World Championship, but not deactivated. [29]
Deactivated 21 July 2019 Chapter 95: Still Chasing PROGRESS declared the championship retired, to be replaced with the Proteus Championshi [30]
9 Luke Jacobs 18 April 2022 Chapter 133: Stop Motion Skeleton Battle Camden Town, London 1 32+ 1 Defeated Jonah in a tournament final to win the reactivated championship. [31]

Combined reigns

Indicates the current champion
Rank Wrestler No. of
reigns
Combined
defenses
Combined
days
1 Walter 3 4 349
2 Trent Seven 1 6 217
3 Matt Riddle 2 9 204
4 Doug Williams 1 2 132
5 Rampage Brown 1 3 112
6 Luke Jacobs † 1 1 32+

Progress Proteus Championship

Progress Proteus Championship[32]
Details
Date established21 July 2019
Date retired25 February 2021

It was announced on 21 July 2019 that the old Progress Atlas Championship which was unified with the Progress World Championship will be replaced. The title was named after the shapechanging Greek god, Proteus. Progress co-founder Jim Smallman said in the announcement that the champion will be able to pick the stipulation for the championship matches, subject to approval by the promotion.[33]

Reigns

Key
No. Overall reign number
Reign Reign number for the specific champion
Days Number of days held
Defenses Number of successful defenses
No. Champion Championship change Reign statistics Notes Ref.
Date Event Location Reign Days Defenses
1 Paul Robinson 15 September 2019 Chapter 95: Still Chasing Haringey, London 1 529 7 This was a 30-person rumble match. Paul Robinson lastly eliminated Danny Duggan to become the inaugural champion. Robinson's selected stipulation was that he could only lose the title by being knocked out or by tapping out. [16]
Deactivated 25 February 2021 Vacated after Paul Robinson left the promotion.

Reception

Patrick Lennon, wrestling journalist for the Daily Star, has attended and reviewed Progress shows.[34]

Carrie Dunn, founder and main contributor of wrestling blog "The Only Way is Suplex",[35] published the book Spandex, Screw Jobs & Cheap Pops: Inside the Business of British Pro Wrestling.[36] Progress Wrestling features frequently in the book including opening a chapter regarding London based wrestling promotions.[37]

See Also

References

  1. ^ Rehal, Sumit (26 May 2014). "Progress Wrestling – 'If we didn't have such talented guys in Britain, then the promotion wouldn't be doing as well as it is,' says co-founder Jim Smallman". The Independent. Archived from the original on 31 May 2014. Retrieved 14 August 2014.
  2. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2 April 2015. Retrieved 2 April 2015.((cite web)): CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  3. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 1 July 2015. Retrieved 1 July 2015.((cite web)): CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  4. ^ "Progress wrestling attendance record". 411mania.com.
  5. ^ "Another Indie Promotion To Host WWE Global Cruiserweight Series Qualifying Matches". Archived from the original on 31 March 2016. Retrieved 28 March 2016.
  6. ^ "411Mania".
  7. ^ "411Mania".
  8. ^ "When it comes to PROGRESS, huge change is needed and huge change has begun: Glen Robinson and Matt Richards are stepping away. @VickyHaskins is involved, @lucefromsocials is involved, @jamesamner is involved & I am involved. More on this tomorrow - Michael Oku". Twitter.
  9. ^ "Progress Wrestling Launch Their On Demand Service". WrestleRopes UK. 22 March 2015. Archived from the original on 15 August 2017. Retrieved 14 August 2017.
  10. ^ Perry, Ian. "Progress Wrestling: Freedom's Road Debut Episode TV Report". PWInsider. Archived from the original on 15 August 2017. Retrieved 14 August 2017.
  11. ^ Kreikenbohm, Philip. "Progress World Women's Championship". Cagematch - The Internet Wrestling Database. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  12. ^ Kreikenbohm, Philip (28 May 2017). "Natural Progression Series IV". Cagematch - The Internet Wrestling Database. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  13. ^ Kreikenbohm, Philip (28 May 2017). "PROGRESS Chapter 49: Super Strong Style 16 Tournament Edition 2017 - Tag 2 - Event @ Electric Ballroom in London, England, UK". Cagematch - The Internet Wrestling Database. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  14. ^ a b Kreikenbohm, Philip (20 May 2018). "PROGRESS Chapter 69: Be Here Now - Event @ Victoria Warehouse in Manchester, Greater Manchester, England, UK". Cagematch - The Internet Wrestling Database. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  15. ^ Kreikenbohm, Philip (30 December 2018). "PROGRESS Chapter 82: Unboxing Live! 3 - A Dukla Prague Away Kit - Event @ Electric Ballroom in London, England, UK". Cagematch - The Internet Wrestling Database. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  16. ^ a b Kreikenbohm, Philip (15 September 2019). "PROGRESS Chapter 95: Still Chasing - Event @ Alexandra Palace in London, England, UK". Cagematch - The Internet Wrestling Database. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  17. ^ Kreikenbohm, Philip (15 December 2019). "PROGRESS Chapter 99: With A Flake, Please - Event @ O2 Academy Sheffield in Sheffield, South Yorkshire, England, UK". Cagematch - The Internet Wrestling Database. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  18. ^ Kreikenbohm, Philip (22 May 2021). "PROGRESS Chapter 111: One Leg In The Air - TV-Show @ Theatre Peckham in London, England, UK". Cagematch - The Internet Wrestling Database. Retrieved 25 May 2021.
  19. ^ Kreikenbohm, Philip (14 August 2021). "PROGRESS Chapter 117: Making Diamonds - TV-Show @ Theatre Peckham in London, England, UK". Cagematch - The Internet Wrestling Database. Retrieved 16 August 2021.
  20. ^ Kreikenbohm, Philip. "Progress Atlas Championship". Cagematch - The Internet Wrestling Database. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  21. ^ Wrestling, PROGRESS (27 February 2019). "The biggest match in PROGRESS history takes place on Sunday 5th May, when World Champion @walteraut faces Atlas Champion @trentseven in a TITLE UNIFICATION MATCH. This huge clash goes down as part of #SSS16 at @yourallypally!".
  22. ^ Kreikenbohm, Philip (25 September 2016). "PROGRESS Atlas Title Round Robin Tournament (2016)". Cagematch - The Internet Wrestling Database. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  23. ^ Kreikenbohm, Philip (25 September 2016). "PROGRESS Chapter 36: We're Gonna Need A Bigger Room ... Again - Event @ O2 Academy Brixton in London, England, UK". Cagematch - The Internet Wrestling Database. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  24. ^ Kreikenbohm, Philip (15 January 2017). "PROGRESS Chapter 42: Life, The Universe & Wrestling - Event @ O2 Academy in Birmingham, West Midlands, England, UK". Cagematch - The Internet Wrestling Database. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  25. ^ Kreikenbohm, Philip (9 July 2017). "PROGRESS Chapter 51: Screaming For PROGRESS - Event @ O2 Academy in Birmingham, West Midlands, England, UK". Cagematch - The Internet Wrestling Database. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  26. ^ Kreikenbohm, Philip (12 August 2017). "PROGRESS New York City - Event @ Elmcor Center in New York City, New York, USA". Cagematch - The Internet Wrestling Database. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  27. ^ Kreikenbohm, Philip (10 September 2017). "PROGRESS Chapter 55: Chase The Sun - Event @ Alexandra Palace in London, England, UK". Cagematch - The Internet Wrestling Database. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  28. ^ Kreikenbohm, Philip (30 September 2018). "PROGRESS Chapter 76: Hello Wembley! - Event @ The SSE Arena Wembley in Wembley, Greater London, England, UK". Cagematch - The Internet Wrestling Database. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  29. ^ Kreikenbohm, Philip (5 May 2019). "PROGRESS Chapter 88: Super Strong Style 16 Tournament Edition 2019 - Night 2 - Event @ Alexandra Palace in London, England, UK". Cagematch - The Internet Wrestling Database. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  30. ^ "A landscape-changing announcement for Alexandra Palace..." PROGRESS Wrestling on YouTube. Retrieved 21 July 2019.
  31. ^ Kreikenbohm, Philip (18 April 2022). "PROGRESS Chapter 133: Stop Motion Skeleton Battle - TV-Show @ The Dome in London, England, UK". Cagematch - The Internet Wrestling Database. Retrieved 18 May 2022.
  32. ^ Kreikenbohm, Philip. "Progress Proteus Championship". Cagematch - The Internet Wrestling Database. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  33. ^ "411MANIA". PROGRESS Wrestling Announces New Proteus Championship.
  34. ^ "Every Saint Has A Past, Every Sinner Has A Future show is a winner". Daily Star. Retrieved 8 December 2013.
  35. ^ "The Only Way Is Suplex". Carrie Dunn. Archived from the original on 20 December 2013. Retrieved 8 December 2013.
  36. ^ "Spandex, Screw Jobs & Cheap Pops: Inside the Business of British Pro Wrestling" Amazon listing. ASIN 1909178462.
  37. ^ Dunn, Carrie (2013). "Chapter 11: In the spotlight - London calling". Spandex, Screw Jobs & Cheap Pops: Inside the Business of British Pro Wrestling. Pitch. pp. 174–176. ISBN 978-1-909178-46-5.