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SAPCA Appoints Andy Reed as its First Independent Chair

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04 July 2017

Last year, UK Sport and Sport England published the new Code for Sports Governance, a mandatory code setting out the levels of transparency and accountability required by UK sports organisations. Among the code’s recommendations was that organisations should look to diversify their boards and increase the number of skills-based directors and board members.
While The Sports and Play Construction Association (SAPCA) doesn't receive public funding, and therefore isn't directly under the jurisdiction of the new code, the body has been keen to lead the way in best practice within the industry. Therefore, in June, it made the decision to appoint the association's first ever independent chair.
The new chair is sports policy expert and former Labour MP Andy Reed. Reed was elected MP of Loughborough as part of Tony Blair's landslide victory in 1997 and during his 13-year parliamentary career made his name as a passionate advocate for sport.
Reed spent three years at DCMS, working on some of the most high-profile sports projects in the history of British sport. The rebuilding of Wembley, the bid for the World Athletic Championships, the Commonwealth Games in Manchester and the building of the Dome were all campaigns in which he played a part.
Reed says that his proudest moment, however, was helping to secure the London Olympic Games and upping UK Sport funding ahead of the Games in 2012. "The increased funding for UK Sport was crucial in allowing us to reach third place in the medal table at London 2012", Reed says.
"I was involved in the process from start to finish. First through my DCMS role and later, after I'd moved to work at the Treasury, where I was able to make the case for increased funding for sport. It was a proud moment when the additional £300m was announced by Gordon Brown".
Among his other achievements was the introduction of the Community Amateur Sports Clubs tax relief scheme (CASC). "I moved a 10-minute Rule Bill and helped it through parliament", he adds.
"It still saves sports clubs millions of pounds each year". As a result of his work to improve sport, Reed was awarded an OBE for services to sport in 2012.
Reed's appointment at SAPCA coincides with the association's 20th anniversary. According to Chris Trickey, SAPCA chief executive, the timing – while coincidental – is very appropriate as the association is "refocusing and reinvigorating" its activities and operations.
“The anniversary offers us a great opportunity to review and improve our offer to the sports and play construction sector,” Trickey says. “And Andy will be a big part of that.
"We will benefit from his considerable experience at board level within other sports bodies and a big part of his role as chair will be to help forge new and stronger relationships between SAPCA and the many stakeholder organisations across the sports and play sector".
Reed said his primary objective will be to ensure SAPCA has a role in the government's plans to get people physically more active. 
"I want to widen the government’s and policy makers’ understanding of SAPCA’s role in building an active nation", he said. "I want them to understand that we have a valuable contribution to make.
"Hopefully my understanding of the wider sport sector – including Sport England, CIMSPA, UK Sport and DCMS and their strategies – and the way the government works will give me an unique opportunity to raise the profile of SAPCA.
"I also want to drive the quality of the membership offer so that people feel it’s an organisation worth valuing and building upon – and I want to be an effective voice for SACPA both internally and externally".

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