British Taekwondo

British Taekwondo Update Report

Welcome to the Jon Smith ‘Monthly Report’ ! …. Actually, not intended and I promise I won’t make this a regular feature …. In all good faith, we had intended to hold an instructors / members forum in London this weekend as promised; however, we only received a handful of registrations by the beginning of this last week, and as we had to contingent for catering, bringing in directors from different parts of the globe and of course logistics – it seemed a wise move to postpone this event until more people were available to join.

It is fully intended to create a gathering of minds before this year’s AGM, but as I write this today (21.04.18) I am advised that the event calendar is not being kind to us in the coming months (although, to be honest, the events are more important than the discussion forum!), so we are currently exploring a possible video conference link, or indeed, if the numbers become prohibitive we may have to spread this over 2 or 3 of those events – or indeed hold meetings at events through the Summer. Your thoughts on these ideas would be welcome.

I believe in good communication as I hope I have demonstrated over the last couple of years, and while placing Board Minutes on the website does not seem to have elicited any response, I feel that perhaps quarterly reports and bi-annual gatherings will give all members and instructors an opportunity to be heard. So this will be the way forward, and of course, if any of you wish to see the latest Board Minutes, they will be available on request.

Notwithstanding, I would like to think that since Shirley, Mike and the new management team have been in place, that much progress has been made, and people feel more positive about the ability of British Taekwondo to professionally represent their interests in the world of Taekwondo.

Nevertheless, myself and the executive management team are aware of certain issues and dissatisfactions; I guess this is not an unusual situation in most sporting bodies, but we must continue to try and manage everyone’s expectations and aspirations as best we can – hence the Forum and in the absence of that, please continue to feel free to contact me or any of the team/ Board members about any issues that are of concern to each and every one of you. Hopefully, we will be able to meet/talk with as many of you as possible during the Summer.

We will continue to try our best to make most of the people happy most of the time !!

So …..

Below is a report and comment from Shirley and Mike on progress to-date in 2018.

Dates for your diary: 

  • British International Poomsae Championships, London 14th/15th July 2018
  • World Taekwondo Grand Prix Manchester 19-21 October 2018
  • British National Championships:
    Kyorugi and Poomsae
    Saturday 27th / Sunday 28th October 2018
    Venue English Institute of Sport, Coleridge Road Sheffield

British Taekwondo First Annual Awards Gala Saturday 27thOctober 2018 (this is intended to become an annual event as part of our National Championships, it is also envisaged that the AGM will take place that same weekend.

British Taekwondo Activity report

Dec 2017-April 2018

British Taekwondo Board members 

Independent Chairman – Jon Smith

Acting Chief Operations Officer – Shirley Stapleton

Acting Technical Director, Vice President Mike Mckenzie

Non-Executive Director Vice President Sarah Jennings MBE

Non-Executive Director Johnny Cowan

Non-Executive Director Said Khelwatty

Vice President – International Affairs Usman Dildar.

To comply with Sport England governance regulations, we will be seeking two further Board Members to replace Mark Abberley and Paul McKenzie. Paul, as most of you are aware, has resigned following a sizeable personal promotion in his corporate life.


British Taekwondo has appointed Rhiannon Prestige has new Membership Officer.

British Taekwondo has appointed James Docherty as Development Officer.

Club Development

The requirement to open and run a club is :

Black belt 1stDan or higher qualified instructor. Certificates from external bodies are being reviewed and recognised.

The instructor must have a valid enhanced DBS (or equivalent in Scotland or Northern Ireland).

Minimum age of 18 years

The Instructor must have insurance through British Taekwondo.

The venue must be registered with British Taekwondo.

It is hoped to introduce a single payment and processing of the above this year.

Feedback from clubs was that there were too many barriers to setting up new clubs especially for new instructors. In consideration of this, the requirement to have a Level 2 Coach qualification has been suspended. The qualification is currently under review to be relaunched in the Autumn with Recognised Prior Learning (RPL) and modular accreditation.

Collaboration Policy

Though we ask for active collaboration between clubs the “collaboration policy” has been scrapped. It was unworkable and restricts the practice.

Kup Grade (Coloured belt examinations).

Kup grade examinations must be conducted by a British Taekwondo member of 4thDan or higher.

British Taekwondo clubs may issue their own Kup grade certificate. The design of the certificate should be submitted to British Taekwondo for approval. This is to avoid any unintentional misuse or inappropriate use of logos.

Kup grade certificates can only be issued by a 4thDan or higher Kup grade examiner.

British Taekwondo can supply a National Kup grade certificate at the new price of £1.00. Application for these certificates must be made by a 4thDan or higher British Taekwondo member and are available to all British Taekwondo registered clubs.

Dan grade examinations

British Taekwondo will host two National Dan grade examinations per year for any British Taekwondo member nominated by a 4thDan or higher British Taekwondo member. Candidates are invited for 1stDan/Poom to 7thDan.

Club Dan grade examinations.

Clubs may conduct grading examinations from 1stto 7thDan subject to meeting the examiner qualification criteria. All applications must be registered with British Taekwondo and application will be made for Kukkiwon certification will be made on receipt of payment.

Clubs may issue a Dan grade certificate, as in the case of the Kup grade certificate the design should be approved in advance.

There were issues at the end of last year regarding the application for Kukkiwon certification. British Taekwondo sincerely apologises for the delays which were inherent in our old banking system. Since the new banking arrangement has been in place the target time frame for processing Kukkiwon certification is now eight weeks maximum from the date of receipt of applications to the British Taekwondo office.

Competitions and events

A review of competitions and events has been completed, and change will be implemented from June 1st2018. This will include volunteer officials’qualifications and requirements and different levels of event status.

Since December 2017 there has been official British Taekwondo representation at most registered events. The competition audit fee has been scrapped, and the Audit process has been re-introduced in a way to support participation rather than blocking it.

 British Taekwondo has purchased Generation 2 Daedo PSS (As used in the Rio Olympic Games). To be made available to BT events. Monitors and Laptops, A Boards and signage will also be available for BT sanctioned events.

Membership books

BT membership books are available to all clubs that wish to give them to their members. The need for a book and license slip was phased out with the introduction of the Hub.

Feedback was that some clubs wanted to continue to issue books and as such, they were edited and are now available free of charge on application to the BT office. A limited number of BT cloth badges were also given to clubs free of charge as well as drawstring bags, pin badges and plastic wristbands.


A review was held regarding the proposed move to Manchester from the Mansfield Woodhouse location. The Mansfield office was finally vacated at the end of March 2018.

The address of British Taekwondo is :

British Taekwondo
Manchester Regional Arena
Rowsley Street
M11 3FF

GAL/GOL Applications

There was a major failure in the administration of GAL/GOL applications at the end of 2017. This has been completely addressed, and all GAL/GOL issues are now dealt with efficiently and speedily.

Level 2 Certification Awards/qualification

The Level 2 qualification is currently under review. However, there have been cases of successful candidates not receiving certification or candidates not receiving feedback.

Anyone affected by this is asked to contact

Cadet Development Programme

Sarah Jennings MBE is leading the Cadet Programme.

Regular squad sessions have been held at the National Training Centre in Manchester.

Appointed Coaches:

Kathy Hook

Ben Shaw

Daniel Flesher

British Taekwondo began the process of applying to host the World Taekwondo Europe Cadet Championships in the summer of 2018. A great deal of work was put into this project. The British Taekwondo objectives were to host a great event that would be cost neutral to British Taekwondo. Unfortunately, an agreement couldn’t be reached, and as such we are not in a position to host that event at this time.

 Poomsae & Para Poomsae

Poomsae squad sessions have been conducted at the National Training Centre in Manchester, and Para talent identification events have been held across the country.

Meeting with WTE/Kukkiwon

Mike Mckenzie travelled to the World Taekwondo Europe (WTE) Headquarters in Athens, Greece to meet WTE President Mr Sakis Pragalos on the occasion of the visit by the President of Kukkiwon and the signing of a MOU between Kukkiwon and WTE. A Class status was secured for the British International Poomsae Championships.

Many British Taekwondo members will be pleased to hear Grand Master Park Soo Nam 9thDan – Former President was in attendance and promised his continued support for British Taekwondo.

 Many British Taekwondo Dan grade holders don’t have equal Kukkiwon certification. We are trying to address this in the new Memorandum of Understanding with Kukkiwon and arrange to skip grade promotions as well as host Kukkiwon courses.

World Taekwondo General Assembly

Mike Mckenzie and Shirley Stapleton represented British Taekwondo at the recent World Taekwondo General Assembly. Claire Bennett of GB Taekwondo and Mike made a presentation about next year’s World Championships to be held in Manchester.

Shirley had meetings with WT and the Global membership system administrators. Mike and Shirley attended a Commonwealth Taekwondo Union meeting.

British Taekwondo Team GB

GB qualified two places for the Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires later in the year and also won 2 Gold medals at the Junior World Championships.

The Hub

There are many key projects underway but the redesigning and development of the phase one of the Hub has been the key focus since December 2017. The Hub is a great tool for BT clubs but the original design and launch presented many challenges for clubs, and this was compounded by poor communication. We’re very pleased that most of this has now been rectified.

With increased transparency of the system, it has become apparent that a concerning number of clubs are not processing membership applications when British Taekwondo membership has been paid for by the individual member. Action will be taken against clubs collecting membership fees and failing to process those memberships.

Manchester Grand Prix 2018

There will once again be some tremendous opportunities for British Taekwondo Clubs and members to get involved in one of the premier events in the World Taekwondo Calendar.