SurfingGB 6 months in

Surfing GB is a membership driven organisation that was born out of the ashes of the BSA in Jan 2011. Having promised a clean break from historical problems the new committee started with bold intentions but by Sept 2011 it was clear that there were fundamental failings. Up stepped a group of surfers, volunteers, experts and interested parties who ensured by gaining sponsorship, calling in favours and securing the goodwill of a sceptical surfing community, the successful running of the 2011 British National championships.

Following the Nationals a new steering committee was convened and they started to pick up the pieces. To be honest it’s been a close run thing, things have been worse than many would have imagined, but by taking a pragmatic and open approach have managed to smooth a lot of issues.

We’ve been busy steadying the ship for 6 months  now, implementing proper procedures, building a new website and integrated online membership system,  sending the junior team to Panama, branding, consulting with existing membership and the wider public through surveys….

To be honest there’s been a lot going on that none of you have heard about, but to give some transparency as promised here are the minutes from the last 6 meetings. Have a read and let us know what you think. Want to help out or learn more? contact us

1—–Minutes Surfing Meeting Steering committee 2

2—Minutes Surfing Meeting Steering committee 2

3—Minutes Steering Committee 3rd meeting 24 11 2011

4— Minutes Steering committee 4th meeting Okehampton 19th Jan 2012

5—Steering Committee Fifth Meeting Minutes

6—Minutes of 6th meeting 14 04 2012

7—-Minutes seventh Surfing GB meeting 3rd May 2012


  1. Read over the minutes of each meeting. Fantastic so many want to get involved, as someone who served the BSA for 7 years I’m intrigued by how you fair with this. Lots of Cheif’s contributed to the initial issues of the BSA (more developed), but the management spent more time trying to deal with internal politics of a small number rather than concentrating on the masses. The surfing community needs solid desicions made in the interests of surfing by people that have the courage to stand by those decisions. Experiences have taught me to just enjoy catching a quite spot on a quite day so as a keen recreational surfer can you provide me one reason to take out a membership and i’ll send you a cheque tomorrow. Regards Mark Parry

    • Hi Mark

      Thanks for the reply.
      Yes, it has taken some time sorting out the problems, and we aren’t out of the woods yet… but as you have seen from the minutes those early meetings dealing with internal difficulties have now been superseded by a focus on projects and the practical tasks required to deliver a good service to members…. So we are getting there!
      Surfing GB exists above all else to provide a service to surfing and surfers.. Surfers are a diverse bunch so different people will need different things. Hope not to overload you with good reasons to join but here are just a few that may appeal to you! Some are altruistic, some purely self centered… but they are all good reasons… take your pick, and get out that cheque book. We need you!

      1.Representation. As a keen recreational surfer you have a strong interest in freely accessing the surf you love. In this increasingly crowded world, it is only a matter of time before regulators and private developers catch up with surfing (they already are). Your NGB is your political voice, it is the body that is recognised by government when they “consult” on issues such as access, safety, coastal infrastructure etc. Alone, your voice will not be heard. By joining with other surfers in a National organisation, you will have the power to influence what happens to the sport you love, at the surf breaks you love.

      2.Buying power By bringing surfers together, in a National Organisation, Surfing GB has more buying power than any of us as individual surfers have. That buying power can put money back in your pocket. The more members, the more buying power. As a keen recreational surfer, How does that affect you? Look at our member discounts page. Look at our cheap surfer friendly travel insurance. Look at our personal accident insurance designed for surfers. Try getting surfing liability insurance anywhere else that even comes close to matching the deal we offer.

      3.Surfer’s Livelihoods You are a keen recreational surfer, so I bet you have friends who depend for their livelihoods on surfing. Whether they are coaches, surf school operators, or maybe they are kids you know at your local break who love surfing and would love to have a career in surfing. Surfing GB has a vital role in providing a framework, regulation and pathways for coaches, judges, surf school operators- these are your friends, or your friends’ kids, maybe your own family, or just the guy you nod to every day on the beach, who is chipping out a living trying to stay close to the sport. They need an NGB – but the NGB wont exist without members. Including you.

      4.Local facilities and Clubs You are a keen recreational surfer, so you will also have friends who are involved in their local surf club. You may even be a member of a local surf club. I wonder if you have good changing facilities there, or decent showers, or board storage? Do your local grommies have access to a decent club house that offers them a place to hang out with their mates and surf their arses off without having to rely on Mum & Dad sitting in the car park? Sure there are a few clubs that have those facilities, but very few. Surf clubs have been underfunded for years… meaning generally crap facilities for local surfers at beaches. Surfing GB is the one organisation that can help to turn that historic under- investment around… because the NGB is your route to funding from Sport England and the lottery… meaning better facilities for you, and a better future for your mates kids… and maybe even your own

      5.Yeewww Factor If you love surfing you will be glued to the internet forecasts when theres a swell on the way… and your eye will surely have been caught by news stories about international contests, whether longboard, shortboard, big wave or small. You will probably even have watched some live- streamed heats from the WCT. Have you wondered ever why so few British Surfers seem to make the podium… or even the starting line at these events? It may not affect your day to day surfing life… but would you support initiatives to improve the chances of British surfers internationally? If you would, that’s yet another reason to join your NGB… because no-one else is working to develop training and performance programmes that are accessible to all kids, regardless of the income level of their parents.

      6.Information. Once the glitches and development work are sorted our Website will be a place you can go for un-biased and helpful information about all aspects of surfing. Its free to use, and someday you might want to use it as a place to find something out. Whats not to like?

      OK I could go on of course… but theres 6 to get you started… if you can put your hand on your heart and say you don’t give a shit about any of this… then we probably have a different world view anyway… and will just have to nod at each other in the lineup as we drift around out there in our own little bubbles… but I hope that you will feel otherwise. In the end its all about surfers taking control of their own sport… if you don’t want an NGB… fine, it wont exist…. Then all those things listed above won’t exist either.
      Have fun & stay stoked!
      Matt Knight
      Member Services Director, Surfing GB

      • Sold Mr Knight! Your response should be read by every member of the surfing community who ever backed any NGB in Surfing. There would appear to be a message emanating from the Surfing NGB that has a clarity that it has not seen for a while. I’ve always believed in the potential of sports to enrich individuals, to provide positive motivation for physical and mental development and surfing for a NGB should be an easy sell to do that. I appreciate your coherent reply to the question and respect that for SGB there are no more yesterdays. The cheque will be in the post. Regards Mark Parry.

        • Haha thanks Mark. Our task is to deliver a decent service with very limited resources and a lot of residual suspicion and cynicism after all the problems of recent years. Its not going to happen overnight but we have to do our best to make it work.
          Appreciate the support,


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