In t erv ie w
Tim Hollingsworth Following the departure of Jennie Price, Tim Hollingsworth, former CEO of the British Paralympic Association, was recently appointed as the new CEO of Sport England. He talks to Tom Walker about preparing for the role and his plans for the body
hortly before the identity of Sport
nation and the need for effective partnerships. It is easy
England’s new chief executive was
to agree with all of those points.”
revealed in August 2018, Sports Management asked a number of sport
Building on experience
and physical activity sector leaders for
Hollingsworth was appointed to the top job at Sport
their advice for the incoming CEO. The
England after nearly eight years as CEO of the British
resulting article, published in the Q3 issue
Paralympic Association (BPA). He led the organisation into
of the magazine, was picked up by Tim Hollingsworth – the
four Paralympic Games – including ParalympicGB’s best-ever
person who the commentators were, indirectly, addressing.
Summer and Winter Games performances at Rio 2016 and
“I pinned that article on the wall in my office at the British
PyeongChang 2018 – and was at the forefront of efforts
Paralympic Association,” says Hollingsworth, who by then
to increase the profile and interest of the Paralympic
knew that he would take up the CEO role in November 2018.
movement. Prior to his time at BPA, Hollingsworth spent
“The advice from the people in that piece was really
more than six years at high performance agency UK Sport
helpful. It indicated that there’s a general feeling that
How useful, then, will his 14-year experience of high
sector to come together – and that Sport England has
performance sport be in his new, grassroots-oriented role?
a crucial role to play in that. “The advice called for better advocacy for what sport
– the last of which as chief operating officer.
it’s really important for the sport and physical activity
“I think it will be useful when it comes to having an understanding of the clarity of outcomes,” he says.
can do, strong leadership to galvanise the message of
“At BPA and UK Sport the medal targets helped sharpen
what physical activity can do towards creating a healthy
our focus. The clearly defined targets gave us the ability
Issue 1 2019