BMC appoint new CEO

Posted by Team BMC on 22/12/2023

The BMC confirm appointment of Paul Ratcliffe as new Chief Executive Officer.

After a thorough recruitment process The British Mountaineering Council has announced the appointment of Paul Ratcliffe, to lead the BMC into an exciting new era.

Paul, who has been performance director for British Canoeing and more recently in a similar highly commercial position within energy trading at Onyx Commodities, will take up his new role at the BMC in February 2024.

He will succeed Paul Davis, who announced earlier this year he would be stepping down following his four-year tenure with the national governing body.

Formed in 1944, the BMC is a membership organisation, established to be open to all and speak on behalf of mountaineers, climbers, and hill walkers, protecting spaces and supporting members in their activities. We have always had a clear purpose: to make the climbing and the outdoor experience of the people we represent as good as it can be, by removing barriers to participation to be more inclusive and have a more diverse audience. And while these activities have changed and participation has grown immeasurably over the years, this purpose holds as true as ever.

Paul, who was born and bred in Manchester, will bring a strong track record of success. Having more than 30 years’ experience in the elite sport world, Paul is a hugely successful athlete, two-time Olympian who won the silver medal for Canoe Slalom at the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games.

Since then, he has held a variety of leadership roles, and has experience within national governing bodies, from performance director and consultant, to holding a Non-Executive Board Director role at Surfing England, alongside being the Chair of GB Climbing Competition Climbing Performance Group (CCPG).

Paul, who has had a lifelong passion for climbing mountains - whether that’s challenging himself to climbing the Matterhorn, or the Cuillin Ridge Traverse - commented he was looking forward to starting work at the BMC, supporting our passionate community, and helping to inspire those curious about our activities to get out and enjoy them.

Paul Ratcliffe, incoming BMC CEO, says: 

“I feel honoured and privileged to be appointed CEO of the BMC and I would like to thank Roger Murray (Chair) and the Board for giving me this exciting opportunity”.

“45 years ago, I left a muddy campsite in Buttermere, and my dad guided me through the mist to climb my first mountain, Fleetwith Pike. That day inspired in me a lifelong love of adventure and instilled strong values of dedication, determination and perseverance. I now intend to lead this wonderful organisation with those same core values and with my philosophy of putting members right at the heart of the BMC.”

"As we move into our 80th year, I’m excited to begin working with the staff, partners, volunteers, and all stakeholders, to gain a deeper appreciation of the current challenges and opportunities and to understand what better looks like for each of you."

Roger Murray, BMC Chair, congratulates Paul: 

“On behalf of the BMC Board, I’d like to extend a big welcome to Paul, who already knows the BMC through his lifelong love of the mountains and his work chairing the Competition Climbing Performance Group (CCPG).

He brings a wealth of experience and knowledge from both his personal journey in elite sport and the expertise and skills that he has developed within the world of finance and trading.  In addition to ensuring we move through 2024 on a secure and sustainable financial footing, one of the priorities for Paul will be to build the roadmap to develop and then implement the strategy for the period through to 2030 - I know this will be a significant consultative process with Board, staff, volunteers, members, partners and participants - and all of his past experience will be invaluable in that important programme of work.

Paul is joining an organisation with Directors, Staff and Volunteers with a wealth of experience who are passionate about our activities and sports, I am sure I speak for everyone when I say that we look forward to working with and supporting Paul and his team over the next few, important years and beyond.”



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Are we members soon going to get an e-mail from our new CEO, outlining the existing problems he has been notified about, and his proposals to resolve these problems to bring the BMC back into the realm of a members organisation, which is financially prudent, and has the interests of the members at heart?

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