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Cash for climbers welcomed

Monday 21st December 2020, 4:09pm

Mountaineering Scotland has welcomed news that competitive climbing in the UK is to benefit from a multi-million investment in Olympic and Paralympic sport.

The investment from UK Sport will amount to £450,000 over the next 12 months, and will be channelled through GB Climbing, which was developed by the British Mountaineering Council.

Mountaineering Scotland’s ClimbScotland team contributed to the funding application and are delighted that their input has contributed to such a positive outcome.

The UK Sport Continuity funding will allow GB Climbing to deliver Covid-secure training for the Home Nation and National Talent squads, as well as several Covid-secure competition opportunities, including a paraclimbing event.

Mountaineering Scotland and ClimbScotland will be working with the BMC to deliver the work, along with other partners Mountain Training and the Association of British Climbing Walls. There will also be liaison with Mountaineering Ireland.

GB Climbing is also committed to ensuring that solid, effective structures can also be built for the other competitive areas under the BMC’s umbrella, such as GB Paraclimbing, GB Ice Climbing and Ski Mountaineering.

Jamie Smith, ClimbScotland Development Manager, said of the funding announcement: “This is fantastic news for athletes and the future national development of the sport.

“We look forward to working with GB Climbing to make what is written on paper, happen. It has been great as a home nation to have been a small part of the large amount of work to make this submission to UK Sport a success. Congratulations to all involved.”

Stuart Younie, Mountaineering Scotland CEO, added: “This is fantastic news following all the hard work put in by the team on the application process. With the recent announcement that climbing will be in the Paris Olympic Games this funding will provide a major boost to help us develop the systems that support our young climbers. We look forward to working with the BMC and the other home nations on delivering our plans.”

The money allocated for climbing is part of a £352million investment in Olympic and Paralympic sport announced by UK Sport, with Progression Funding for seven sports – including climbing – to uncover and support the champions of tomorrow. 

The funding increase is a boon for both elite and talent pathway climbers and will also give grassroots participants who are just starting their journey hope of one day competing on the international stage, a clear pathway to Olympic success.

It is the third commitment of support to GB Climbing by UK Sport, building upon the previous Aspiration funding and the more recent Continuity funding. 

Thanks to the UK Sport Aspiration Fund, GB Climbing was able to create a High Performance Training Facility at The Climbing Works, Sheffield, which allowed our elite athletes and coaches to continue to train this year despite Covid-19 restrictions. This fund also enabled Will Bosi and Molly Thompson-Smith to prepare for, and be supported in, competition at the recent IFSC Moscow European Championships.

Photo of Will Bosi by Sandy Carr