Telegraph.co.uk - Full Article
by Jim White
20 JULY 2017
The British Equestrian Federation has ordered an independent investigation into the administration of the sport following the resignation of Clare Salmon as the body’s CEO.
In her resignation letter Salmon, who only took up the post in June 2016, raised what Joanne Shaw, the BEF chair, described as “significant and serious concerns about culture, governance and the interaction of some of the Member Bodies.”
The BEF is an umbrella organisation covering 15 full and three associate bodies involved in British equestrian sport, from British Eventing to the Pony Club.
Part of its remit is responsibility for distributing funding from UK Sport for the Olympic programme. And since the post-2016 reduction in central financing, the BEF budget for Tokyo 2020 of just under £15.5million is nearly £2.5million down on what it was for Rio.
This has led to a series of disputes with the constituent bodies, all of whom have seen budgets shaved. Issues have ranged from Carl Hester, coach to Charlotte Dujardin and a leading figure in British dressage, suggesting that his sport has lost sponsors after they were leant on to make up the ensuing financial short fall, to those in eventing lamenting the enforced redundancy of a number of coaches on the junior programme.
Several figures within the sport have questioned why coaches have been laid off, while the BEF has not yet seen any reduction in its 30-strong administrative staff.
Further strain has been caused by the BEF’s embrace of Sheik Makhtoum’s sponsorship of the UK Endurance Masters being held next month in Euston Park, Suffolk. This offers prize money of £1,768,900 for horses competing in cross country races of up to 80km in duration.
After six horses died in an endurance event in Dubai in January, there has been widespread dismay at the connection: GB Endurance has seen a spate of resignations since the sponsorship announcement was made...
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