Leading sports administrator

Piers Martin’s (OE 1987-1995) love of sport has led him to a number of top GB sports leadership and advisory roles.

Piers (OE 1987-1995) swam internationally during his time at QE, but then switched to water polo, playing for Great Britain as a Junior and Senior.

“I made a natural move into coaching and tutoring whilst at [Manchester] University,” he says. “I then took a job as National Development Manager for Water Polo with the ASA, the governing body for swimming.” Later, he was appointed as a Director, running the North West Region.

Following an MBA at Manchester Business School, he took up a role consulting on the UK set-up of the World Academy of Sport - a global programme offered to sports federations.

This was followed by his recruitment to help prepare fencing for London 2012, with a focus on taking the sport from one led by an amateur committee to one run as a successful business.

During the run-up to the 2012 Games, Piers was the Guest of Honour at QE’s Founder’s Day service at Chipping Barnet Parish Church, where he spoke of his work with the Olympic team.

The fencers enjoyed mixed fortunes at the 2012 Olympics. Britain remains without an Olympic fencing medal since 1964, but there were some promising signs: in the quarter-finals of the men’s team foil, the British team were only narrowly beaten by the world number-one team, Italy, who went on to take the gold medal.

Piers backed a post-Games, sport-by-sport Olympic assessment by the Independent newspaper, which called for British Fencing to be allowed to continue implementing “far-reaching change” for another Olympic cycle.

Since stepping down from his role with British Fencing, Piers has taken on a number of sports-related appointments.

In 2012 he became a director of The Podium Group, which creates strategies for Sport & Business and also of Saxon Vaal Consulting Ltd. Between 2012 and 2014 he was the Chief Operating Officer of British Bobsleigh. He was appointed as a Trustee of both UK Deaf Sport and the British Disabled Fencing Association in 2014. In 2014 he also became an advisor to British Wheelchair Basketball.