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Independent Non-Executive Chair, Swimming Trust

The Swimming Trust is an independent charity established in 1996 and dedicated to getting more people swimming more often in safe and supportive environments.

We know that swimming, whether for leisure or for sport, provides the ideal environment to develop skills that will benefit individuals throughout their lives. It provides a foundation of a healthy lifestyle, good teamwork, focus and a spirit of fair play. Swimming has no age barrier; all members of the family irrespective of ability or disability can enjoy it.

The Swimming Trust aims to identify barriers to participation, whether they are physical, cultural or financial, so that more people can enjoy the wide ranging benefits of swimming in all its forms. The Trust is dedicated to delivering, in partnership with Swim England, Scottish Swimming and others, opportunities to enjoy the sport and to create a positive impact on the lives of individuals and communities. Our Trustees, staff and partners recognise the importance of ensuring that our business activities are delivered on a solid governance platform.

The Swimming Trust believes in the principles of sports equality by working to recognise inequalities and taking positive action to overcome them. Our ethos and code of practice is transferred to all our collaborative organisations and working partnerships.

The Swimming Trust is registered with the Charity Commission, registration no: 1058338.

The Role

The role of the Swimming Trust Chairperson is to provide inclusive and inspirational leadership and guidance throughout the organisation. This is an exciting and vital opportunity to help develop and shape the future growth of the charity to meet changes in both the charitable sector and the structure of swimming in England.

With the recent incorporation of Swim England they have been granted charitable status. This will change our relationship with the governing body of English swimming and will present new opportunities as well as challenges.

A key function for the Chairperson will be to lead the identification of viable programmes, initiatives and areas for investment, where the Swimming Trust can be influential and develop new partnerships whilst retaining and building on its core values and relationships.

Role Profile and Purpose

To provide inclusive and inspirational leadership and guidance to the Board of Trustees

Specific Responsibilities

Act at all times as an effective, positive, proactive and credible ambassador for Swimming Trust
  • Promote the Swimming Trust effectively and appropriately leading innovative best practice
  • Oversee the maintenance and continuous improvement of best practice governance arrangements and strategic risk management
  • Ensure compliance with the Charity Commission rules for English charities and other applicable standards of best practice
  • Ensure that each Trustee constantly upholds and promotes the agreed Swimming Trust vision, mission, values and expected standards of ethical conduct and behaviour in fulfilling their responsibilities for encouraging best practice governance.
  • Appraise annually the performance of the Board of Trustees as a whole and individually
  • Oversee the development of a clear, coherent, compelling, cost-effective and comprehensive Swimming Trust Strategic Plan in conjunction with other Board members
  • Monitor performance against corporate implementation plans, budgets and targets; where appropriate, agreeing corrective improvements other Board members.
  • Ensure that the Board functions as a cohesive and constructive team engaging collaboratively and constructively at all times with Swimming Trust employees, volunteers, members and other stakeholders
  • Regularly monitor, evaluate and hold to account the cost-effective activities of all Board subcommittees and working groups.
  • Help ensure continuous compliance with all statutory and legislative requirements including health and safety and equality.
  • Promote best practice with regards to inclusion, equality and diversity across the Swimming Trust at all times

Person Specification - Skills, Knowledge & Experience
  • Independence and impartiality.
  • An open mind, willing to listen and consider the views and needs of others, whilst constructively challenging the status quo.
  • A collaborative team player
  • A clear thinker with balanced judgement and excellent analytical and problem solving skills as well as the proven and demonstrable ability to quickly and thoroughly identify and grasp issues, seek out and fully evaluate the alternatives in arriving at a consensus on the best possible course of action.
  • Knowledge of, and enthusiasm for the charitable sector, aquatics and social and cultural change
  • A proven track record of consistently and successfully leading continuous improvement and best practice corporate governance at Board level
  • Directly-relevant proven experience of effective team leadership, strategic planning, performance management, revenue generation, budgetary management, audit, risk management, organisational development, succession planning and business continuity.
  • Excellent interpersonal, influencing and communication skills, with the proven ability to present views in a clear, constructive and concise manner to a wide range of audiences and stakeholders at all levels.
  • Proven ability to build and maintain excellent relationships with at all levels with a wide range of internal and external stakeholders.
  • Demonstrable commitment to promoting equality, diversity and inclusion at all levels
  • Proven ability to give and receive honest and constructive feedback.
  • Proven ability to encourage equal participation of, and contribution from of all members of the Board.

There is likely to be a requirement to meet partners and stakeholders as well as some administration in addition to the meetings of Trustees that are held in central London normally four per year.

To satisfy Sport England’s definition of ‘independence’, the Chair must be free from any other close personal connection with the Swimming Trust and must, from the perspective of an objective outsider, be viewed as independent. Participation in aquatics does not in itself prevent any individual from being considered independent.

How to apply

For more information and an informal confidential discussion about this new opportunity, please contact Jane Nickerson, CEO Swim England (Jane.Nickerson@swimming.org).

To apply, please send your CV and covering letter to the Honorary Secretary, Brian DeVal (secretary.swimmingtrust@swimming.org).

Closing date: midday Thursday 8 February 2018. Applications after this time cannot be considered

Scheduled interview date: 13 February 2018 in central London

Trustees may serve for a maximum of two terms of five years. The role is voluntary with expenses reimbursed according to prescribed Swimming Trust policies.

The Swimming Trust is an equal opportunities employer. Swimming Trust will always make every adjustment possible to help accessibility for anyone. and is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and vulnerable adults and expect all its volunteers to share this commitment

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