Response to Northern Athletics "The Way Forward" Consultation
England Athletics welcomes Northern Athletics’ decision to consult with clubs in the North of England regarding their recent funding proposals.
As part of that consultation, we wish to reiterate our support for Northern Athletics as providers of area level competition.
In their document, “The Way Forward”, Northern Athletics state that they need to identify additional annual income of £35,000 to £40,000 in order to continue to promote their events. They also correctly state that England Athletics have been unable to commit to continuing to provide a grant beyond 2018-19.
For 2018-19 England Athletics have committed to a grant of £32,000. Given the uncertain nature of our own future income streams, England Athletics is not able to commit to long-term funding arrangements with any partner beyond the 2018-19 year. However, for clarity, at no stage have we stated that we will no longer provide any funds to Northern Athletics and partners in the South and Midlands beyond 2018-19. Indeed, we remain committed to supporting partners to provide competitions and will continue to work with the Area competition providers to review the most appropriate ways of providing support in the future.
As we stated in our recent communication on this subject, we know that area competitions are popular among many of our member clubs and that as a result these events, taken collectively and disregarding their general overheads, can be delivered on a break-even budget and, in the case of some of the off-track events, generate a surplus.
We have therefore discussed a range of options with Northern Athletics and the other area competition providers to help ensure the future viability of these competitions. These have included the hosting of new events, such as road or cross country events, to raise additional funds and the increasing of entry fees for participant clubs and individuals in area championships.
We will continue our conversations with all the area competition providers around ensuring the future viability of area championships.