Where's my licence? UKA strikes again Print
Written by Les Hatton   
Wednesday, 23 August 2006 11:00

As featured in Athletics Weekly 31/8/06


Where’s my licence? UKA strikes again


As things have gone hopefully quiet on the athlete licensing front,I just wanted to remind anybody who thinks it would be a good idea,that,in my professional opinion (I am a computer scientist),UKA is incapable of operating such a scheme. I do not level such criticism lightly so this is why.

I’m apparently a Level 2 coach of the javelin persuasion. I’ve been coaching for 15 years and duly transferred over to the new scheme when the previous incarnation went bust in 1997. No transfer licence appeared but I continued coaching and attending courses until October 2003 when UKA informed me they have never heard of me and can they have my reference number please. Unfortunately as I never received a licence,I did not know what it was. A month later I was told I had been reinstated to their reluctant database and asked if I had received a licence yet. No I hadn’t.

December 2003 - I was informed the issuing company had gone bust. January 2004 - a new company took over and I was assured that I was on the list to receive one. Barely able to contain my excitement,I waited until June 2004 to ask where it was. UKA replied that they had my form but had lost the photo,a fact they neglected to tell me unfortunately. Overcoming my disappointment,I thought I would make things a little easier and send a JPEG graphics file of myself. Lose that if you can,I thought. They apparently did and I gave up.

A year later in October 2005 I received a nice letter from UKA about ClubsFuture and was I interested in coaching. I replied I was in fact jolly interested in coaching and had actually been doing it for 15 years but had somewhat joined the back of the queue in the licence department and bet them they were incapable of actually sending me one. Stung by this challenge,a flurry of E mails issued forth to and from various bits of UKA blaming it on the Christmas post of all things and that they were led to believe that one of their colleagues was pushing IT to issue one today. I assume this meant a licence. The day after,I was told it would actually take 3 weeks. Nothing came.

A few months later there came to pass the great CRB check. Now I was already CRB-checked as an academic in a British University but such is the mindlessness of bureaucracy that I have to have another. (One of my club colleagues has actually had three so I can’t complain). I am now CRB-squared but have I received a licence? Not on your nelly. Now because I still don’t have a licence,I don’t know my coaching number,I can’t vote and I can’t register any of the courses or relevant experience I have acquired,so I guess I will get disenfranchised at some point,if it hasn’t already happened.

Anyway,I’ve officially given up. I expect I will get another nice letter this October asking me if I am interested in coaching but I’m not bitter. I just wanted to know if anybody else gets treated like this or is it just me?


Les Hatton thinks he’s a level 2 javelin coached based at Kingston & Poly but he knows he’s a veteran thrower and a professor of computer science interested in the aerodynamics of throwing.



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