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  4. Minutes of the meeting of the Sport Wales Board held on Friday 29 July 2022 at the Edgbaston Park Hotel, Birmingham/online

Minutes of the meeting of the Sport Wales Board held on Friday 29 July 2022 at the Edgbaston Park Hotel, Birmingham/online

Present: Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson (Chair), Pippa Britton (Vice Chair), Ashok Ahir (Items 1-5.2), Ian Bancroft, Rajma Begum, David Trystan Davies, Delyth Evans, Nicola Mead-Batten, Hannah Murphy, Judi Rhys, Professor Leigh Robinson, Phil Tilley, Martin Veale

Staff: Brian Davies (CEO), Graham Williams, Emma Wilkins, Craig Nowell, Liam Hull, Joanne Nicholas, Owen Lewis, Jane Foulkes, Owen Burgess (Item 5.3), Susie Osborne (Item 5.3), Amanda Thompson (minutes). External: Sian Dorwood (Step To Non-Exec)

1.    Welcome/apologies for absence

The Chair welcomed all to the meeting. Apologies for absence were received from Alison Thorne and Neil Welch (Welsh Government).

2.    Declaration of Interests

No new declarations were made.

3.    Minutes of the last meeting dated 6 May, action log and matters arising

The minutes were accepted as a true and accurate record.

Matters arising: Youth Panel: The Executive had revisited the original terms of reference and discussed the Panel’s potential role. The Children’s Commissioner was keen to assist with its future. The CEO would speak to the Panel’s Chair and members. There was also the recent independent review of the Young Ambassador’s programme to take into consideration. It was suggested that the Panel be asked to come up with a project and be given a budget. Suggestions on how to take the Youth Panel forward would be brought to the Board’s next meeting in September.

4.    Chair & Executive Report – SW(22)23

National Lottery: UK Sport has been concerned about how the costs of this challenge will be met and whether any compensation will be due. In the report the phrase “an appeal has been upheld” was incorrect and should read “permission has been given to appeal”. Any threat to future Lottery funding was years ahead but the risk was high on UK Sport’s agenda.

Football Association of Wales: Good progress had been made and an offer letter would be issued shortly. There had been a lot of changes to the staffing at FAW.

A letter received from the Culture & Leisure Officers Association, Community Leisure UK and Welsh Sports Association raised concerns about impact of the current economic circumstances on the delivery of local government supported art, culture, sport, physical activity and leisure services in Wales. A joint response from Sport Wales and Arts Council Wales would be sent shortly and both organisations were happy to work collaboratively on initiatives for a more sustainable future.

Welsh Government Anti-Racist Wales Action Plan (ARWAP)– Sport Wales had been encouraged to apply and a submission had been made this week.

School Sport Survey: The survey was now closed and received 116,000 responses. The CEO thanked all those involved for their dedicated work to ensure such a high level of replies. Schools would receive their individualised reports by the end of August and the local authorities slightly later in the autumn. The data would used immediately for the investment approach for data-driven partners. More information would be given to the Board in September.

Whyte Review: A presentation on the response would be given at the next Board meeting in September. It was important to make sure the Home Nations were not overlooked.

International Womens Group secretariat would pass from New Zealand to UK with a launch held at the Commonwealth Games Birmingham 2022.

Commonwealth Games: Members felt there was a lack of diversity among Team Wales’ representation at the Opening Ceremony (noting that the group did not include all athletes taking part in the Games).  Discussion about diversity ensued and the following points made:

·         Sport Wales must ensure NGBs are acting in an inclusive way.

·         Streetgames were helping to inspire young people by taking them to the Games as spectators.

·         Sport Wales has used imagery that is not adequately representative.

·         Sport Wales should not just rely on specific partners to encourage under-represented groups to apply for funding but should carry out targeted direct action at community level.

·         Analyse diversity data for all positions within the sports sector including at top level.

·         Some para sports have found little legacy benefit from the London 2012 Paralympic Games, the numbers attracted to some para sports has not increased enough.

·         Cardiff City identified a lack of players from Asian backgrounds. Should this type of review be held on a wider sector basis to identify differences within and across ethnicities?

·         This issue should be raised with the Commonwealth Games Federation. Does the selection of sports disadvantage some characteristics over others?

·         Sport Wales has made an important shift in priorities as detailed in the Business Plan, but the organisation has more to do.

5.    Policy & Strategy

5.1 Business Plan Period 1 update – SW(22)24

The report updated on the activity and delivery against the Business Plan for May and June 2022.

Feedback points:

·         Progress for the Sports Partnerships was very positive. Central South was moving to appoint a Project Manager. The Executive would shortly meet with the two local authority CEOs for Gwent. RB suggested she help the Sport Partnerships to engage with their ethnic minority communities.

·         Taking findings to the Health Boards would be discussed further outside of this meeting.

·         More coordination needed with the EDI work.

·         Mind the Gap write-up to be corrected as saying our views were not being taken up was wrong.

·         The tackling obesity strategy in Wales was faltering and Sport Wales should keep a close eye on this and push for it to happen.

5.2 Inclusive Sport System – presentation

The weightings had been revised for the three principles of equality (50%), expertise (30%) and approach (20%). An additional ‘capacity’ factoring would also be applied to the total score. Descriptions, criteria, impact statements and impact scoring had been refined.

The proposed approach for NGBs would be based on the data collected from the School Sport Survey 2022. NGBs that meet a threshold of participation data were classed as data-driven, those that did not would have a hybrid approach using performance data, equality principle of the model and relevant National Survey/School Sport Survey data.

Recent feedback asked for three investment approaches rather than two (data driven, principles based, hybrid) and to be mindful of the various unique roles of some partners. Other feedback points included the need for having sufficient budget to grow new partnerships, having a bespoke managed transition as per the data-driven approach, to take an accountability approach and to implement the system as soon as possible.

Proposed next steps:

·         In Q2 to update partners, use feedback to shape the final model, peer review and School Sport Survey mapping

·         In Q3 to agree the final model (Board’s meeting in September), carry out final testing and an advisory audit (October), recommended investment for all partners (Board’s meeting in November), communicate further details on implementation to partners.

·         2023/24 Q1 Implement model (transitional year 1)

Feedback points:

·         The importance of clearly articulating what is meant by the Inclusive Sport System. The sports summit to be held this autumn would be a good opportunity to do this.

·         Flexibility needs to be incorporated without allowing self-interest to dominate.

·         Communications and messaging will require tailoring to fit with different audiences.

·         The qualitative interview process with children and young people will follow on from the School Sport Survey and will go into more depth than can be captured within that survey.

5.3 Non-Data Driven Partners Investment Approach – SW(22)25

The paper provided an update on progress since May on the future approach for Non-Data Driven partners for implementation from 2023/24.  The revised model used a principles-based approach with weighting at equality (50%), expertise (30%) and approach (20%). Each principle included a range of criteria to determine impact and the total score would then be weighted with a capacity score to finally give a percentage used to determine the maximum financial investment.

Because of the complexities of NGB inclusion within the SSS a hybrid approach will be added to the Strategy Investment Approach, as detailed in the paper. The project team would test this out to better understand the impact. Communication to partners would explain the approach. There would be a transition period of protected budgets for year 1 in 2023/24. 

Members agreed to the direction taken and expected to approve the final model at their next meeting in September.

5.4 SWNC Future Facility – SW(22)26

The Strategic Outline Case (SOC) had been completed. A detailed presentation had been given to the Sport Wales Board’s Facilities Review Group (FRG) on 19 July and the paper reflected their discussion points, actions and the recommended short list as shown below. The SOC was closely aligned with the Welsh Government’s objectives as well as the Sport Wales’ Vision and Strategy but it would require more refinement including more detail for the scope and scale of the options.

Recommended SWOT Analysis Short List:

Option 1: Business as Usual (BAU)

Option 2.1 Refurbishment within the building footprint

Option 2.2 Refurbishment and extension

Option 2.3 Refurbishment, partial demolition and rebuild

Option 3.1 New facility on current site (zone 1)

Option 3.2 New facility on current site (zone 2)

Option 4 New facility on a new site

Following FRG’s meeting the Executive had discussed the SOC further with Welsh Government officials who gave positive feedback and spoke about alignment with manifesto commitments and the Welsh Infrastructure Investment Plan (WIIP). There was discussion around connectivity with the Environment and Transport policies plus the National Events Strategy (with an eye on any potential future bid to host the Commonwealth Games).  The Welsh Government would expect to see Sport Wales seek partnership funding. Officials had not commented on possible relocation sites other than to express keenness for a fit with their regeneration and transport objectives.

Board Members in their role as Trustees had discussed the SOC and shortlist at the Sports Council of Wales Trust meeting earlier in the day. Comments and feedback were recorded on those minutes.

Board Members approved the recommendation to go ahead with the short list options and progress to the Outline Business Case (OBC).

5.5 Sport Wales Board Governance Action Plan – SW(22)27

The Board effectiveness survey was carried out in late 2021 and the results reported in February 2022. Several development opportunities for were detailed in the paper and would be worked into the annual cycle of business. Horizon scanning was defined as looking beyond the next five-year period and not deep-diving on current matters. Regarding the role of a Vice Chair for each of the Board’s Groups & Standing Committees, Members were asked to make their views known to either the Board’s Vice Chair or the respective Group or Standing Committee Chairs.

6.    Finance & Risk Management – SW(22)28-33

The following documents had been reviewed by the Audit & Risk Assurance Committee at its meeting on 15 July 2022 and the recommendation was for the Board to approve the accounts.

The CEO and Chair of ARAC thanked all involved for the high standard of reporting.

6.1 Audit Wales ISA 260

Members noted the report. No issues were raised.

6.2 National Audit Office ISA260

Members noted the report. No issues were raised.

6.3 Statutory Accounts 2021/22: Sports Council of Wales Consolidated

Members approved the accounts which would now be submitted to the Welsh Government.

6.4 Statutory Accounts 2021/22: Lottery

Members approved the accounts whilst delegating final approval to the Accounting Officer as the UK Parliament was now in recess.

6.5 Statutory Accounts 2021/22: Sports Council of Wales Trust

Members approved the accounts which would be filed with the Charities Commission.

6.6 Finance 2022/23 Q1 Report – SW(22)33

This report provided a summary of the financial position of Sport Wales for the period ended 30 June 2022. Members noted the report, and no issues were raised.

7.    Board’s Groups & Standing Committees

7.1 Summary of Groups & Standing Committees – SW(22)34

Members noted the report. No issues were raised.

7.2 Annual report of the Audit & Risk Assurance Committee

This report gave the Board an update on the work of the Audit & Risk Assurance Committee during 2021/22. The Chair was most pleased with the excellent record achieved by Sport Wales of substantial assurance audit reports. Staff were thanked for their efforts to achieve this record.

8.    Any Other Business

No further business was raised.

9.    Dates of next meetings

Dates in 2022: 16 September 2022, 25 November 2022 

Dates in 2023: 17 February, 12 May, 7 July, 22 September 2023, 24 November 2023 

The minutes were approved at the Board’s meeting on 16 September 2022.