You may already be aware that almost 130 clubs have now committed to Northern Athletics
by showing their willingness to be part of our new affiliation scheme. The need to
determine our future by becoming financially independent has had to be our long term
aim as a result of cuts in funding from England Athletics. We will continue a dialogue
with our national governing body but unfortunately many within our sport are aware
that central government is increasingly reducing funding for leisure activities and
in particular grassroots competitive sport. We are planning ahead.
Those clubs that have already committed to us will continue to be part of our future
post October 2018 and we hope that clubs yet to commit will indicate they will do
so before the end of September. Once we have income from the scheme we will then
be able to make decisions from a position of strength and stability. Those decisions
will be assisted by input from those clubs that affiliate to us. Be part of us and
then be part of the decision making. If the income is sufficient it will enable us
to prioritise the way we operate in the interest of those clubs who choose to join
We hope more clubs will affiliate before October to enable your club athletes to
compete in Northern events. Only in the last few weeks we have had clubs e mail to
say they have had club meetings confirming their affiliation in October.
We are having another successful summer of track and field championships. Our senior
championships at Sportcity were followed by an exciting Northern Inter Counties event
at Leigh with Yorkshire, Lancashire and the North East taking the top three spots.
In between, Sunderland hosted our 5K road championships. Our junior championships
are about to take place at the new track in Liverpool and the entry list looks impressive.
Before we know it we will be returning to Sportcity for our popular autumn road relays.
The first competition under the new affiliation scheme will be the cross country
relays in late October in Sheffield and without drawing breath we will be into our
indoor season. We also look forward to our cross country championships in January
closely followed by our hosting of the National at Harewood House outside Leeds.
Again we want to assure all the clubs that affiliate this year that we will review
our position over the course of the following six to twelve months. An opportunity
to discuss and to receive input from our affiliated clubs will also be available
over that time and initially at our Annual General Meeting in November. We remain
committed to consulting the affiliated clubs as to the best way forward. We are now
in the process of creating a brand new and exciting website which will better publicise
and enhance our activities. October 2018 will be the launch of a new era in our already
long history and we hope you will be part of it.