British Fencing launch crowdfunding campaign

British Fencing launch crowdfunding campaign
By Sportsbeat

28/02/2017 at 18:25Updated

Britain's fencers have set a target of crowdfunding £100,000 following the decision of UK Sport to withdraw their elite level funding.

British Fencing received more than £3million from UK Sport in the four years leading up to Rio 2016, but will now not receive any money from the organisation, after the sport was judged not to show enough medal potential ahead of Tokyo 2020.

Badminton was one of the other sports falling foul of the UK Sport funding axe last week, but British Fencing is not giving up and has launched a crowdfunding campaign, aiming to raise a minimum of £100,000 to aid its athletes in their Olympic ambitions.

But Georgina Usher, CEO of British Fencing, knows they now need to cut their cloth accordingly.

"Now is not the time to pack our swords back into our kit bag and go quietly into the night," she said.

"The fencing community will get together and we will come out fighting and we will find a way.

"Fencers went to World Championships and European Championships and got results before World Class funded programmes existed.

"I would admit it is going to be that much tougher going forwards, our athletes will be competing against better funded athletes from other countries.

"Over the last four year cycle we have had over £3million into elite level fencing from UK Sport, clearly we are not looking at crowdfunding to replace that level of investment.

"But it won't stop us, and certainly I'm not going to turn anyone down who wishes to fund us to that degree, but the reality is that we have to now set out on a more sustainable and realistic track, and do the best that we can to put as much support as realistically possible around our athletes.

"But come to the realisation that we are not going to be competing, like for like, in terms of a World Class programme, in the way that one is able to with UK Sport funding." Sportsbeat 2017