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11 Feb 2020

UK Sport launches review of UK Athletics amid 'major concerns'
BY Tom Walker

The review will look to identify actions to help the national governing body become 'fit for the future'

The review will look to identify actions to help the national governing body become 'fit for the future'
photo: Shutterstock

UK Sport has commissioned an independent review into UK Athletics (UKA), as part of what it calls a process to ensure the national governing body becomes "fit for the future".

The review will look to identify actions for the governing body to "help the sport move forward", recommend areas of change and define areas to be reviewed further.

It is the latest review launched into the troubled NGB and will sit alongside those already commissioned into safeguarding and UKA’s response to issues surrounding the Nike Oregon Project.

In late January, Malcolm Arnold, a former head coach and the first performance director of UKA, publicly questioned the direction of the organisation.

Speaking to the Guardian, Arnold suggested that British athletics is in its worst state for 60 years, having "squandered" the golden legacy of London 2012.

Commenting on the review, Sally Munday, CEO of UK Sport said: “Issues raised in recent months regarding the sport are of major concern to both UK Sport and to the leadership team at UK Athletics.

"Both organisations are committed to delivering long-term improvement and ensuring the sustainability of the sport while acting in the best interests of its athletes, staff and the wider athletics family.

“Our aim in commissioning this first stage review is to ensure we have a full understanding of the priority issues and any next steps required to help the sport move forward.

“I’d like to thank UK Athletics’ Board for their ongoing collaboration and support for this independent work and look forward to working with them in the weeks and months ahead to build a positive future for the sport.”

In response to the launch of the review, UKA said in a statement: "We welcome the review announced by UK Sport to recommend areas of change and organisational development to ensure that UK Athletics is fit for the future.

"We are pleased to have the support of UK Sport on a wide range of issues and the review will sit alongside and complement this work and is a further step in building a strong future for the sport.

"Our immediate focus is obviously on the preparations for delivering a successful year and results at the Olympic and Paralympic Games this summer, whilst playing our part in delivering success for the sport as a whole."

The preliminary work on the review will be undertaken independently by Dame Sue Street, former permanent secretary at the DCMS, who will assess the issues raised and recommend next steps later in the spring.



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