A New Strategy for Baseball and Softball in the UK

Mon 3 Aug 2020

BaseballSoftballUK, the national development agency for the sports in the United Kingdom, today unveiled an ambitious new strategic plan for baseball and softball.

Encompassing baseball and softball, the plan sets out a clear goal of increasing participation through a unified and common ambition: ‘more people playing baseball and softball.’

READ THE STRATEGY HERE

“This plan sets out our continued commitment to develop both baseball and softball together. By embracing the commonality, inclusivity and range of opportunities within baseball, slowpitch and fastpitch softball, we will appeal to the widest possible playing audience. It is from this approach that our sports can most rapidly grow.” said Interim Chair, Chris Greenhalgh.

“BaseballSoftballUK has a vital role in achieving this. Spanning baseball and softball, we will leverage opportunities afforded by presenting our two sports together, as one community, acting as a voice and contact point for partners, government and the sports sector, nationally and internationally.”

Like BaseballSoftballUK’s core value of developing baseball, fastpitch and slowpitch softball hand-in-hand, in May, WBSC President Riccardo Fraccari, called for the sports to unify “at all institutional levels”. Our “Two Sports One Ambition” reflects this combined approach for the betterment of both sports.

While the goal of more people playing baseball and softball in more places continues, BaseballSoftballUK’s objective to see baseball and softball “Played in Every Park,” this new strategy focuses on reinforcing the grassroots efforts to grow the sports around the United Kingdom.

Contained within the strategy are the following four priorities:

  1. Increasing participation, by targeting new audiences and people who are under-represented in our sports. 
  2. Developing talent, by helping to create the next generation of home-grown talented athletes.
  3. Supporting the grassroots, by helping local organisations become stronger, safer and sustainable.
  4. Improving the financial sustainability of the sports and of BaseballSoftballUK, by increasing revenues, harnessing our assets, engaging our workforce and building new relationships.

In the coming weeks, BaseballSoftballUK will work with the sports to create sport-specific development plans, and discussions are ongoing with key stakeholders to ensure that each of the plans will resonate across both British baseball and softball. BaseballSoftballUK will also be unveiling additional portions of the new strategy, beginning with a Development Charter offering support to grassroots clubs and leagues on Monday, 10 August. Further details of the new strategy, including a grassroots fund for facility development, will also be unveiled in the following weeks. More information will follow on BaseballSoftballUK.com and on BSUK’s social media channels.

This new strategic plan is the result of an independent review, in consultation with several stakeholders including the British Softball Federation, the British Baseball Federation, Sport England, UK Sport, Major League Baseball and Little League, as well as a national survey of playing members.

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