19/02/2021- Scottish Fencing

Scottish Fencing and British Fencing announce new strategic partnership

Scottish Fencing (SF) and British Fencing (BF) are delighted to announce a new strategic partnership for performance and pathway development in Scotland.

Effective from April 1st, the performance pathway model in Scotland will align with the recently published British Fencing performance pathway FTEM model, offering a clear and unambiguous path to the top level for athletes and coaches.

Scottish Fencing Pathways Manager Blair Cremin will work directly with BF Head of Pathways Steve Kemp and the soon-to-be-appointed BF Head of People and Culture to identify, educate and align athletes and coaches meeting and aspiring to meet the high performance criteria and supporting them as they progress through the Pathways system.

Scottish Fencing CEO Vincent Bryson said “This is a fantastic progression for the sport and of course for the two organisations. The quality of partnership and interaction we have enjoyed with Georgina and Steve at British level has been phenomenal as they showed quite clearly over the years a real keenness to connect the system and offer those who can meet the criteria the chance to progress. It’s been a great project to work with our British Fencing colleagues on and I am so grateful to our own SF board for the strategic foresight they have shown as the discussions continued over the last year or so. It’s been great to have their backing and support, particularly in the COVID world. To have got this partnership ‘over the line” is a real collective effort from everyone involved.”

Georgina Usher, CEO of British Fencing said ”I am delighted that we are in a position to formalise this important strategic partnership between SF and BF as we move into the next funding cycle. Working together to connect the fencing system and pathways will benefit athletes and coaches in Scotland and across the UK and provide a solid platform for future success. Founded in shared values and a shared belief that ‘Better people make better athletes’ I am convinced that this partnership will be a real force for good and will have a significant positive impact on our wider shared ambitions for our sport. It has been a real pleasure to work with Vinny and his team, and we are extremely excited about the opportunities that lie ahead. I would like to express my gratitude to the Board of SF and the Board of BF who have provided the support, strategic guidance and vision under which this partnership has developed.”

George Liston, Chair and President of Scottish Fencing was also pleased to see SF integrate more with British Fencing on a programme where values are clearly the driving force. “I am delighted to see the further evidence of the significant progress that Scottish Fencing are making to ensure that we continue to be a reputable and investable organisation. Making sure we demonstrate we have credibility and capability to manage strong partnerships like this is key to meeting our own objectives. Aligning with British Fencing to support the pathway progression of athletes and coaches is something I have been passionate about for so long – it is great to see it come to life. It has been a pleasure for myself and the Board to be able to support both organisations as they align their pathway objectives ever further to offer a more integrated experience for members and I am certain this is just the beginning of more great things to come.”

Steve Kemp, BF Head of Pathways, said “Following on from our successful UK Sport funding bid, one of our primary focus areas is creating a structure and system that ensures world class progressive support is provided to athletes who have the potential to achieve medal success. Working together to hyper connect both SF & BF pathway systems by facilitating the sharing of knowledge and expertise, engaging external stimulus, and encouraging the alignment between NGB partners, will be key to sustainable success, and be vital as we work together to support the return of fencing. This new way of working in turn will deliver better value and increased opportunity to all our members whilst also strengthening the sport of fencing for future generations.”

Blair Cremin, Pathways Manager for Scottish Fencing said “At Scottish Fencing, we work closely with sportscotland and other governing bodies in trying to create a world class sporting system. This strategic partnership with British Fencing will allow us to continue this work, while creating more and better opportunities for our people to progress and develop. We embrace a “Sport for Life” approach which means putting our people at the centre of everything we do. With young people, we take a holistic approach to their development. We believe this will give them the best experience of fencing and build a foundation for life-long participation in our wonderful sport. I am very grateful for the opportunity to work closely with British Fencing, and ensure a more joined-up approach for the development of fencers and coaches across the United Kingdom.”


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