UK Athletics and the four Home Country Athletics Federations have welcomed the findings of the UK Sport Review of UK Athletics and are committed to working together positively and collectively to support the recommended change plan.
Ian Beattie, chair of Scottish Athletics, and Mark Munro, our chief executive, have been among the steering group guiding this process which has led to a united approach.
The report states clearly that across athletes in Britain there is now a need for:
*Collaboration across all bodies in the areas of strategy, leadership and culture
*Collaboration across all bodies on governance
*Enhanced focus on ethical decision making
*New communications and digital strategy
*United approach to events
There has already been progress made in recent weeks and months through positive and collaborative dialogue between the Chairs and CEOs of all organisations – UK Athletics, Scottish Athletics, England Athletics, Welsh Athletics and Athletics Northern Ireland.
From this dialogue there has been a clear commitment from all parties towards a joint underpinning strategy and in defining clear roles and responsibilities that will help us to deliver our joint vision contained within the document ‘An Athletic Nation’.
Ultimately, it is anticipated that this will lead to the development of a governance structure that creates a seamless connection between UK Athletics and the Home Countries.
Of course, the most serious threat facing the sport right now is the current Covid-19 crisis and we have already made significant joined-up decisions in helping the sport navigate this challenging time involving the future competition calendar, adherence to government guidelines and advice to all members of the athletics family.
At the point when athletics is able to emerge from the shadow of Covid-19 it will need – and deserves – a structure that is working in complete alignment to ensure we utilise resources efficiently to maximise returns for the sport.
‘UK Athletics welcomes the report by Sue Street and the change plan,’ said Nic Coward, Chair of UK Athletics.
‘It captures what we have heard very strongly from across the sport, that there is a need for change. That is what we will be getting on with.
‘We’re committed to working with all involved in the sport and are already doing so, particularly with the Home Countries, to implement change for the good of athletics.’
Ian Beattie, Chair of Scottish Athletics
‘We have been encouraged by the positive communication and discussions we have had in recent weeks with the new interim Chair and CEO of UK Athletics,’ said Ian Beattie.
‘It is clear that there is now a window of opportunity for athletics in the UK, and Scottish Athletics is fully committed to this process and to playing our part in developing and implementing the necessary improvements.
‘At this stage we have agreed on the ambition and direction of travel. That includes a review of the governance structures at UKA and its connection across the Home Countries and the development of a UK-wide strategy for the sport with agreement on clear roles and responsibilities.
‘There is a lot of work ahead, but we believe that we have made a positive start.’
Myra Nimmo, Chair of England Athletics on behalf of the EA Board, said: ‘There is now the opportunity for all Home Countries Athletics Federations and UKA to consider how best to shape the future organisation of athletics throughout the UK.
‘Through the direction provided by the already jointly agreed vision document we look forward to the development of a unified strategy which efficiently delivers athletics from grass roots to elite.’
Steve Perks, Chair of Welsh Athletics said: ‘The findings of the review allows us to be focused in a positive way on the coming years.
‘It sets out a clear agenda for UKA and the Home Nations to have a clear commitment, strategy and dialogue on how to ensure that athletics is once again at the forefront of British sport.’
John Allen, Chair of Athletics Northern Ireland said: ‘Athletics Northern Ireland welcomes the findings of the review and will continue to work constructively and collaboratively with UKA and the other Home Country Federations to implement the recommendations as quickly as possible.’