British Surfing needs a strong and credible National Governing Body (NGB) because without official recognition, surfing as a sport cannot access funding from Sport England. That means surf clubs, surf schools, surf businesses and individual surfers are all unable to compete for badly needed development grants with other sports.
A strong NGB does not just access funding. It should be assisting its members with things that matter to them: cheap insurance, club development, running contests, certification and ensuring good standards of training: of judges, coaches, surf schools. The NGB should also be training and managing the National teams that put British Surfing on the global map. A strong NGB gives surfers a political voice, ensuring that surfers are consulted as stakeholders in marine and watersports policy.
All surfers are affected, directly or indirectly, by the strength or weakness of their NGB.
The 2011 British Nationals will provide an opportunity for surfers to meet and decide on the future strategy for their NGB. Elections and a plan for 2012 are on the agenda.
There is now a proposal for winter squad training in preparation for Panama 2012. Juniors who have an interest in GB squad selection for 2012 and beyond, have an opportunity to register their interest; and everyone has an opportunity to decide on the squad selection criteria and programme for winter training.
US surfing Legend Joey Buran will be attending the British Nationals, in an informal and advisory capacity, with a view to working alongside a crack team of the country’s top junior coaches: Tony Good, Joel Gray, John Ellis, Lloyd Cole, Micah Lester and Kelly O’Toole. This respected and knowledgeable team will be meeting at the event to decide on, and present, a development squad strategy for this winter. Please feel free to contribute your ideas for a fair selection process to this site and to the facebook page. All ideas are welcome.