07/06/2023- Club Digest


The Club Digest covers all of the latest news and information for BF Clubs.

BF is constantly trying to improve its services and look at new ways of encouraging people to get involved in the sport. We work closely with all the home countries in doing this.

To help us with this we would be grateful if clubs could share this 5 minute survey with members so we can discover more about fencers and their fencing.

We can assure you that the information gathered will be confidential and any data gathered will ensure anonymity when it is published.

If you have any queries about this questionnaire then please contact Liz Behnke – Equality and Safeguarding Manager at [email protected]



British Fencing (BF) announces that the 2024 Wheelchair Fencing World Cup will be hosted in Cardiff, Wales, in partnership with UK Sport and the Welsh Government.

BF is delighted to announce that the 2024 Wheelchair Fencing World Cup will be hosted in Cardiff, Wales. BF has been awarded this opportunity to host for the first time.

The January 2024 Cardiff event will be the final European-based qualification fixture ahead of the Paris 2024 Paralympic Games. Work is already underway to ensure a world-class experience is delivered for athletes from both the UK and the rest of the world.

BF’s CEO, Georgina Usher said,

“BF is looking forward to delivering this world-class event, welcoming athletes from the UK and across the World as they seek Paralympic qualifications. This event, the first of its kind to be held in Wales, will maximise the opportunity to increase the exposure of the sport across Wales and the UK, and encourage the next generation of athletes, officials and volunteers into the exciting world of wheelchair fencing. “With the support of Welsh Fencing, Disability Sport Wales and Sport Wales, we are excited to see the longer-term opportunities that develop from hosting the World Cup, starting with the National Championships that are taking place in Swansea in July, as part of the Para Sport Festival.”

Welsh Government, Economy Minister, Vaughan Gething, said,

“I’m delighted that we have recently been awarded the rights to host the 2024 Wheelchair Fencing World Cup here in Cardiff. We want to showcase Wales as a nation that is committed to supporting sporting opportunities for disabled people. That is why Welsh Government has given its full backing to this and other events and we continue to work with key partners across Wales to further develop our event hosting strategy for disabled people.”

Pal Szekeres, Chair of the Wheelchair Fencing Executive Committee, said,

“We are delighted to be adding Great Britain to our growing list of World Cup locations around the world. The country has some hugely talented fencers, including Paralympic, world and European medal winners and top-ranked athletes, and the country’s track record for hosting successful major events is exemplary. The ingredients are all there for a fantastic World Cup!”

Esther Britten, Head of Major Events, UK Sport, said,

“Funded by The National Lottery, we’re building a programme of major events that will help GB athletes qualify and prepare for the Paralympic Games. As we continue the journey towards Paris 2024, I’m delighted that we are able to give wheelchair fencing athletes an exciting opportunity to compete and prepare on home soil.”

Welsh athlete Gemma Collis said,

“It’s beyond exciting to know that we’ll be hosting a Wheelchair Fencing World Cup in the UK. I was fortunate enough to compete at the London 2012 Paralympics, and there really is nothing like competing on home soil! “Having represented Wales at the Commonwealth Fencing Championships last year – where my teammates were undoubtedly the loudest and most supportive bunch in the venue – I am sure that the support we’ll have as a GB team will be ferocious in Cardiff, and I cannot wait to experience that! “This is an incredible opportunity for us to showcase Wheelchair Fencing in the UK, and to hopefully attract new people to get involved in this incredible sport – whether that’s as an athlete, official, coach or volunteer. It’s not a sport I ever originally thought I’d end up getting involved in, but it’s been truly life-changing and I would love it if even a few more people could experience that off of the back of the World Cup in Cardiff.”


On 1st and 2nd July 2023, BF will run a two day athlete development experience for wheelchair fencers as part of the Athlete Development Programme (ADP). This will be run alongside the standing ADP sabre camp at the UK Sports Institute at the University of Bath and will be the first of many such experiences as we build a national community of wheelchair fencers who may one day challenge at the very highest level.

Is this experience for me?

There are currently no specific selection criteria for ADP experience participants: we ask that you come prepared to work hard over the weekend and use it as an opportunity to meet and network with other wheelchair fencers. This will also be an opportunity for fencers to meet some of the team from BF and ask questions about the athlete development pathway. The experience will cater to all weapons, and fencers will be supported to explore disciplines other than their primary weapon should they choose.

If you are looking to attend other development events as preparation for joining this experience, please consider the Wheelpower National Junior Games, more information on which can be found here.

What happens on an ADP camp?

Fencers will have the opportunity to take part in sparring sessions as well as dedicated tactical workshops exploring elements of their competitive game. Outside of fencing, there will be workshops with mentors from the True Athlete Project (www.thetrueathleteproject.org) which will help fencers explore aspects of the sport off the piste and provide them with tools to enhance their fencing experience. The camp will be staffed by British Fencing ADP coaches who have experience working with wheelchair fencers in their own clubs and at competitions.

Where will the camp be held?

The event will be held at the UK Sports Institute at the University of Bath, Map HERE. Fencers will be able to make use of the state-of-the-art facilities on the campus and train alongside standing fencers from the sabre ADP, joining them in athlete support sessions and exploring joint training opportunities.

Accessible parking can be found here, past the electric car chargers on both the left and right, you will need the JustPark app to pay for parking unless you want to use the machines.

Main access to the sports complex is here, and will be used on the first morning of the camp. When leaving the camp and arriving on the second day we will be using the fire exits in the fencing salle, located here.

What should I bring?

FoodWhile there is a café on site we recommend that fencers bring their own food as the selection is rather limited and a long way from the training hall.

What you need

If you have any questions or support needs regarding the below please get in touch; we will be able to source kit and chairs if required, but please let us know if advance so we can help as much as possible.

  • Full electric fencing kit including breeches and socks
  • Your own fencing chair (if you have one)
  • At least one spare weapon and set of wires
  • Sports kit for non-fencing activity. T-shirts, shorts, comfortable indoor trainers
  • Named water bottle
  • Your training diary (if you have one)
  • Any essential medication
  • Clothes and toiletries for the weekend

How do I sign up?

Please find the details on the news post here.


The data we collected through our Level Access Survey has been assessed and the summary report, attached to this news post, shows that although there are areas of good practice with disability inclusion within the fencing community more needs to be done to support equal opportunity for disabled participants. The areas needing the most focus to better prioritise disability inclusion across our community are increasing coaching confidence in supporting disabled participants and addressing the barriers caused by specialist equipment needed for wheelchair using fencers.

The Level Access Survey was released on February 13th and was open for three weeks until March 5th. It was sent to club administrators through our Sport 80 system and reminders were published throughout the period on social media. We also ran a Community Discussion event in the second week to answer any questions and support any challenges administrators had in filling it out.

Disabled people remain one of the least active groups in our society. British Fencing worked with Activity Alliance to find out about current inclusive delivery at fencing clubs across the UK. The survey defined disability as anyone who has a long-term health condition, impairment, or illness, including deaf, blind, visually impaired, neurodiverse individuals, and those with learning impairments or other long-term conditions. The project explored club’s engagement in inclusive and wheelchair fencing through an online survey. With 21 questions in total, 19 being quantitative and 2 open qualitative questions.

This insight will help British Fencing to understand the current landscape of inclusive delivery and explore the support clubs may need to help more disabled people to take part in fencing.

Of the 401 fencing clubs, with a valid membership at the time of release, within the UK, the survey was completed by 93 club administrators or owners from 88 clubs.

“Our sincere thanks to all those who participated in the survey, and to the insight team at Activity Alliance for their support in the survey delivery and reporting. This information will help us in directing resources and providing the best support possible to increase coaches’ confidence and participation by disabled people within our sport” – Rick Rodgers, BF Inclusion Officer (Disability)

The recommendations from the survey results as agreed with Activity Alliance are as follows.

Prioritise the inclusion of disabled people in fencing clubsThere is a need for more efforts to prioritise inclusion of disabled people in fencing clubs. Among the 22% of clubs that completed the survey, only 58% prioritise working with disabled people. It is also predicted that non-respondent clubs are less likely to prioritise inclusion and work with disabled people. British Fencing encourage clubs to review their club priorities and enhance their efforts to work with disabled people.

Rollout of CPD trainingClubs have a lack of capability, confidence, and knowledge of working with disabled people. To improve the inclusion of disabled people in fencing clubs, British Fencing will work to provide CPD training, add disability inclusion modules to coach and workforce training, and signpost to other relevant training opportunities.

Enhancing Wheelchair Fencing opportunities through loaned equipmentWhile specialist equipment is important for supporting wheelchair users, only 8% of the disabled population are wheelchair users and many disabled people do not require different equipment. British Fencing will address the barrier of limited access to equipment by providing loan options for wheelchair fencing frames to strategically positioned clubs, explore other solutions, and educate clubs about inclusive delivery.


Find out the latest news on the GB League

The GB League has been designed to mirror many of the aspects already seen in inter-club competitive sparring. Clubs are encouraged to adapt their GB League fixtures to their facilities and situation. The focus for participating clubs and coaches is creating a fun and inclusive environment.


Our BF affiliated clubs will be the hosts of their own GB League fixtures. The format of the GB League means that it is as logistically as simple as running a normal competitive fencing club session, as there are no formal requirements for referees, piste layouts or timed bouts.

Have a look at our information video here.

If you are interested in running a fixture you can sign up here.

We will be releasing more details and resources early next year so make sure you keep an eye out for updates.


Are you looking to up skill your volunteers? Check out the upcoming courses BF have that are available to book now;


  • ITCF Bristol 24-25.06.2023 – open for bookings
  • Online ITCF Stratford-upon-Avon 24.07.2023 (Foil, Epee, Sabre) – open for bookings
  • CFL2 Stratford-upon-Avon 25-28.07.2023 (Foil, Epee, Sabre) – open for bookings
  • WS3 Stratford-upon-Avon 24-28.07.2023 (Foil, Epee, Sabre) – open for bookings
  • ITCF Durham 02-03.09.2023 (Foil, Epee, Sabre) – open for bookings
  • Online ITCF Epsom 03.09.2023 (Foil, Epee, Sabre) – open for bookings
  • CFL2 Nottingham 09-10/16-17.09.2023 (Foil, Epee, Sabre) – open for bookings


  • BF Welfare Officer Training 27.06.2023 – 18:00 – 21:00
  • BF Welfare Officer Training 20.07.2023 – 18:00 – 21:00
  • BF Welfare Officer Training 20.08.2023 – 9:00 – 12:00
  • BF Welfare Officer Training 09.10.2023 – 18:00 – 21:00
  • BF Welfare Officer Training 11.11.2023 – 9:00 – 12:00


    • Thursday 15th June Epee Referee Theory workshop and Assessment – Online £20

    Time: 6-10pm, run by Chris Farren, full details and registration can be found here Practical assessments can be arranged and discussed with referee educator at the end of the theory session.

    • Sunday 19th November Level 2 practical Epee Assessment

    Time 08.30-18.00Venue Tudor Grange Leisure Centre, Blossomfield Road, Solihull, B91 1NB. Fee £20

To find out more details and to book your place please head to the website here.

Can’t see what you’re looking for? Let us know via our Expression of Interest Form.


At BF, our portfolio of National Championships and international events simply could not happen without the support and expertise by members of the fencing community who volunteer at events.

If you have been to a BF event, you may have seen some of our amazing volunteers throughout the weekend. This article takes a deep dive into the wide variety of roles within an event.

Field of Play Team

This role involves supporting the field of play lead in the smooth running of the event, including dealing with any problems/queries on the field of play during the day and liaising with DT and the medical team.

You may have seen our field of play team in their high vis jackets at events. They are the first port of call for any questions on the event for queries such as assisting fencers with direction to their piste and relaying important messages from the field of play to the DT and Medical Teams.


This role involves working as a team of armourers to ensure that the equipment on the field of play in maintained throughout the event, attending FoP equipment issues.

Our armoury team may also be on hand to answer any queries regarding personal kit and can be seen to give demonstrations on how to test your own weapons and kit for beginner fencers at events such as the BYCs (British Youth Championships).

DT Team

This role involves supporting the head of DT in the running of the competition, including operation of the computer software, inputting results and plating up the next round of bouts to go out to the referees!

At BF events, the DT team often comprises of members who have had experience of DT in international and domestic major events!

Media Team

Being on our media team covers a variety of roles, including event photographers, social media content creators, camera operators, commentators, directors and producers!

Working within the media team is often a varied role, to support the event media lead with content, live-streaming and interviews throughout the event.

Piste Side Team

For wheelchair events, our piste side team are crucial to the smooth running of the competition. The team assist with the movement of frames and equipment, including changing the layout of frames for Left/Right Handed fencers and assisting the referee with checking the distance between fencers before a bout.

Accreditation Team

This role involves working alongside the BF head of accreditation to issue accreditation during the competition and to check accreditation when entering the field of play.

Check In/Help Desk

This role involves helping and assisting with any queries coming in from fencers/parents/spectators throughout the event.


British Para Fencing National Championships 15-16th July 2023

Cadet and Junior National Championships 2023 – 16-17th September 2023

Wheelchair Fencing World Cup, Cardiff – 11-15th January 2024


Make sure all contacts on your club profile are up to date to ensure that the club is kept in the loop with all the latest information.

  1. CLUB ADMINS – Check your club details are up to date on the Sport80 membership platform. We are still getting a number of undelivered messages when we send emails, to club contacts. Please ask your club secretary to check and update the club profile if necessary.
  2. COACHES AND WELFARE OFFICERS – It’s a good time to check that all your coaches and welfare officers are up to date with their required certificates. Remember you can add them to our online Coach Register and Welfare Officer lists (see our requirements for coaches here and welfare officer guidance here).
  3. COVID-19 OFFICERS – We are requesting that clubs as part of their return to play practices appoint a COVID-19 Officer. To register your COVID-19 Officer on the membership platform please see instructions here.
  4. MEMBERS – Encourage your members to check their own details are up to date on the Sport80 membership platform.





Clean sport education for all

To help support fencers to compete clean, understand their rights and responsibilities, and recognise the risks, we are now putting on a series of sessions designed for all competitive fencers. These will be delivered over Zoom, and last for 90 minutes. Please note spaces are limited and we will close the registration as soon as the session is full.

The next session will be on the 12th June 2023, at 18:00. To take part please register here.


A selection of the latest news from BF.

Remember to keep up to date on our website.


Sixteen-year-old Amelie Tsang claimed the World title in the Cadet Women’s Foil Individual event on the fifth day of the World Championships in Plovdiv, Bulgaria, today.

Ranked eighth in a field of eighty-three, Tsang won five of her six first round fights and went into the knockout stage of the tournament ranked ninth.

She earned a bye through the round of 128 before going on to beat O’Neil (AUS) 15-3, Jakubowska (POL) 15-12, Garyfallou (GRE) 15-9 and Kuritzky (ISR) 15-9 to make…


Nat Lewis joins British Fencing’s ADP Team as Project Officer – Para Fencing

Nat has extensive coaching experience, and is a frequent coaching presence at BF’s Athlete Development Programme (ADP) Camps. He joins BF in a contracted part-time role where he…


Following existing widespread adoption, from 1st September 2023, all Senior ranking events will be required to use the Sport80 platform to accept entries.

This change is being introduced following the success of a similar move for Cadet and Junior tournaments and the existing widespread adoption of the…


Applications are now open for the 2023 DiSE programme.

We would like to tell you about an opportunity to become part of a government-funded training programme, the Diploma in Sporting Excellence (DiSE), part of British Fencing’s Athlete Development Programme (ADP), leading to…

You can also subscribe to our new weekly FENCING DIGEST email featuring the previous week’s latest news and announcements. Sign up here.

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