The Regional Councils are a key part of the structure of athletics in England. They form a link between the grass roots of club athletics and the England Athletics’ Board and Senior Management. The full Regional Councils’ Terms of Reference can be found on the England Athletics website here. Regional Councils meet between 4 and 6 times a year and there is an expectation that council members will be involved in additional meetings relating to their expertise across the region and potentially the country. It is important for the development of our sport that the Regional Councils are balanced, fully representative and inclusive, containing members from across the spectrum of athletics within their region. Councils can co-opt members but must always have more elected members than co-opted.
Individuals on regional council often act as a portfolio holder for a key area of the sport within the region. In London there is a portfolio holder for the following areas:
The London Council members are led by Chair Peter Crawshaw. Current councillors are: Adrian Day, Anthony Soalla-Bell, Ben Noad, Ellie Brown, Lorna Boothe, Mark Purser and Steve Bosley.
Lorna Boothe (Coaching) – Lorna is a double Olympian and Commonwealth Gold and silver medalist in the 100m hurdles and was GB team manager for 9 years which included being the Senior Team Manager for the Sydney Olympics. She worked for the IAAF and was part of the Academy Management Group responsible for the setting up of the IAAF Academy and World Class Coaches Club. She was also a part of the consultation team and then a development officer for the setting up and management of the Lottery Funded World Class Performance Programme. As a member of English Sports Council Racial Equality Advisory Group she worked with the Commission for Racial Equality to set up the now high profiled Sporting Equals programme. Lorna was part of the very successful England Athletics mentoring scheme and has represented England at the Commonwealth Games Glasgow 2014 and Gold Coast 2018 as Coach for the speed events. She is currently on the European Athletic Coaches’ Association’s Council and has had many successes in the national male and female age groups particulary in sprints and hurdles.
Steve Bosley (Clubs) – Steve has been a member of Herne Hill Harriers for over twenty five years and has also been president of Surrey County and club as well as county team manager at cross country, track & field and sportshall in addition to being chair of the South London Athletics Network. He has organized events in all facets of athletics including co-organizer of athletics at London Youth Games. He enjoys all aspects of athletes whether dealing with newcomers having their first introduction to the sport or Olympic athletes.
Ellie Brown – Ellie was previously a co-opted member of the council for three years. She is a UKA Level 2 coach and President of Kent A.C. She has been a member of Kent AC for over 14 years where she hold the position of Women’s Cross Country Secretary. Prior to that she ran for Winchester AC as a child. She is also involved, as a parent, with the young athletes section of Cambridge Harriers.
Ellie has completed the London Marathon six times raising sums for various charities and still runs for Kent AC albeit cross country is her favourite discipline although she has been known to frequent the long jump pit!
Following a career as a board director for a renowned brand of bars/restaurants based in the City of London, Ellie founded Greenwich Pilates Ltd in 2003, subsequently setting up Greenwich Runners (a Run Together group), Buggy Runners and the Greenwich Running Academy. She has also worked closely with local schools developing and delivering sports programmes.
Peter Crawshaw (Officials) – Peter has been a member of the London Council since 2009 and is the current Chair. He has focussed on a number of Athletics Administration roles after retiring from a senior Finance role at the end of a long career in the City of London, during which he had a wide involvement with athletics as a Competitor (Hertfordshire 800m champion and a Blue at Oxford University), Club administrator (Achilles Club team manager, Membership Secretary and Treasurer for over 25 years and closely involved with the organisation of university athletics), and Field official.In the latter role, Peter is active at all levels from grass roots to International competition and has been a member of the SEAOA Field Sub-Committee since 2004 chairing that group since 2009. He is also currently Officials Secretary for Surrey County AA and Surrey Schools AA. Peter was appointed to the England Athletics Board in 2014, and chairs its Audit & Assurance Committee. He also represents England Athletics on the UKA Safety Advisory Group.
Ben Noad – Ben has been in athletics in one capacity or another since he started competing at an age of 11 years for Bath and Percy AC followed by Bristol & West AC and presently Highgate Harriers who he joined in 2004. During his competitive years he won a couple of English Schools titles, won a scholarship to Providence College, RI, USA where he was coached by Ray Treacy (brother of Irish great John Treacy) and competed and trained alongside Mark Carroll (multiple Irish record holder and ex European champion) and became a GB Junior and Senior International.
These days his competitive appearances are confined to putting in the occasional shift for Highgate Harriers in Cross Country League fixtures and Road Relays. More time these days is split between running his own personal training business, his role as South London Athletics Network Coorindator, SAL Track team manager for Highgate, Coach to numerous distance runners based in London, working towards becoming a level 2a Time Keeper, until recently a Quadkids Coordinator, Sportshall team manager for SLAN and Father to a 2 year old boy with another baby on the way in January. He is a passionate supporter of Club Athletics and hopes to use his position on the London Council to raise issues that impact on Athletic Clubs at grass route level. From his role with Quadkids and organiser of the London Youth Games he is particularly interested on how the sport can attract and retain children through exciting competition formats. (this does not necessarily need to be confined to junior competitions).
Adrian Day – Adrian is a keen Master’s sprinter and member of Vets AC and Enfield and Haringey Athletics Club. A qualified Non-Executive Director, Adrian has held leadership and consulting in roles in several London brand, marketing and communications agencies and is now an independent consultant. Adrian is a Leader in Running Fitness and sits on the Board of Capital City College Training, London’s largest FE organisation.
Mark Purser – Mark is a Vice President of Blackheath and Bromley Harriers and have been a member there for over 20 years. I enjoyed a reasonable level of success as an athlete winning National age group titles and am now a senior team manager and coach for the club, I was also team manager for London South at the UKA Indoor City Challenge series of events. My main athletics role now is as an official. I am a level 4 starter and regularly take on event management roles for county events on both track and cross country. This has given me a better understanding of what it takes to stage events of this size and the importance of having a support network in place to bring things together. I also work within a small team to stage a series of successful summer open meetings at Blackheath and Bromley. I’m also parent to two teenage athletes and feel I have a broad understanding of how the sport works from local club events through to international competition.
Anthony Soalla-Bell (Schools) – Anthony is a veteran of the 1998, 2002, and 2006 Commonwealth Games, where he competed for Sierra Leone in Athletics (Shot Put and Discus) and in Weightlifting; and is the holder of each of the country’s relevant National Records. He is now a PE Teacher at a school in South London. In his spare time he coaches the throws at Tooting Bec Athletics Track, and competes for Shaftesbury Barnet Harriers. He is a Team Manager for ‘England (South East)’ at the Sainsbury’s UK School Games, and for several years he was the Secretary of London Schools AA.