British Swimming CEO Buckner Welcomes Funding Confirmation For Tokyo And Paris Olympics

GBR Coaches: Photo Courtesy: British Swimming

British Swimming CEO Jack Buckner has welcomed confirmation from UK Sport of its funding allocation in the build-up to Tokyo 2020 and through to Paris 2024 – although the award for the award for the Paris cycle is more than £2million lower than for the former.

UK Sport outlined plans on Friday for £352million investment in Olympic and Paralympic sport with 43 sports set to receive funding including 36 World Class Programmes.

New Progression Funding is to be released for seven sports to identify future athletes as part of  a 12-year approach including climbing, skateboarding, basketball and surfing.

What it means to those aspiring to compete at the Olympics and Paralympics in Tokyo next year is that the funding is protected.

British Swimming

Photo Courtesy: British Swimming

Artistic swimming has received continued funding for Tokyo but their application for the Paris cycle was unsuccessful and water polo has also missed out.

For swimming, the Tokyo World Class Programme 2020-2021 is being funded to the tune of £18,731,645 ($25,297,000) while Para-Swimming receive £8,805,943 ($11,900).

The Paris World Class Programme 2021-2024 award is £16,590,017 ($22,405,000) and £7,829,247 ($10,575,000) for Para-Swimming.

That means the funding for the Paris cycle is £2,141,628 lower than that for Tokyo.

A statement from British Swimming read:

“The key piece of information for everyone preparing for Tokyo is that the investment in our athletes has been protected, with current levels of funding continued until after the Olympic and Paralympic Games next summer.

“With the COVID-19 pandemic having caused financial impact across the globe, it is good news that UK Sport has managed to secure commitment from DCMS, so that we know where we stand in the build up to the next two Games’.

“At the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games, British para-swimmers contributed to a third of all medals won by ParalympicsGB, whilst on the Olympic side our divers and swimmers won three and six medals respectively.”

Commenting on the UK Sport update, Buckner said:

“It’s great news for us that we are able to carry our full allocation of funding into 2021, which provides us with a fantastic platform to achieve the Olympic and Paralympic success we have been building towards over the past four years. We feel our programmes are in a great place and have every chance of success next summer.

Jack Buckner

Photo Courtesy: Jack Buckner Twitter

“It is also useful that we now have a sense of direction for Paris and so thank UK Sport for working hard on this with the DCMS, to give sports clarity after what, across the board, has been the most challenging year in memory.

“Whilst our Tokyo Aspiration Funding has remained intact for Artistic Swimming (as with our other disciplines), the sport has missed out on Paris funding, as has Water Polo.

“Naturally, this is extremely disappointing news, especially given the strategic vision we have for the sport and the success of our duet.

“That being said, feedback for both of these disciplines was positive and we hope to have the opportunity to successfully bid for other investment in the future.”

The British Water Polo Leadership Group expressed its disappointment but is intent on maintaining a collaborative approach in the hope of success with a future bid.

A statement read:

 “As many people will know, British Swimming were invited to submit an investment application and detailed strategic plan for Water Polo in Britain to UK Sport back in September.

“This application was developed in partnership with the home nation governing bodies of England, Scotland and Wales, the wider polo community and the British Water Polo Leadership Group.

“Today British Swimming received feedback from UK Sport on its application for progression sport funding for the next quadrennial.

“Unfortunately our sport was not successful in obtaining direct investment on this occasion, which is very disappointing news for everyone involved and our stakeholders.

“UK Sport has, however, officially recognised the strong work done to date on the strategy and governance of our sport, most notably the collaborative approach taken by British Swimming, the home nations and the wider water polo community.

“We have been made aware that there is likely to be future funding support for sports in our position and we believe that the work done to date will put us in a strong position to successfully apply for this in due course.

“We are encouraged by the recognition of UK Sport of the progress that has been made and although funding would have accelerated our development, we will continue to push forward in our ambition to develop the performance end of British Water Polo.”


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