Message to members from Chair of England Boxing

April 3, 2024 | by Nabillah Akhtar


Dear Members,

I would like to give you an update on the roll out of our new membership system, known as the Locker, that will replace the Vault over the next few months. It’s a long overdue change that we expect will reduce the use of paper, increase visibility and effectiveness, and enhance the safety and transparency of the sport, bringing it into the present age of technology.

With any new system there are challenges and uncertainties and I am aware that many of you are concerned about this change. Please be reassured that our only motivation is to support the incredible work that is done by staff and volunteers both in and out of the ring, at every club and gym and throughout the regions across the country. You deserve our full support and the best systems to provide you with the tools to make the sport work to its full potential.

I am sure that many of you will be wondering how to use the new system and whether there will be enough time to get to grips with it. For most clubs, coaches, officials and volunteers, the processes and systems that you are used to will largely remain unchanged, the main difference being that they will be on a new website and the use of BCR1 cards will now be available on your smartphone rather than paper booklet.

The Locker is designed to be straightforward, and as easy to use as Facebook. There will be extensive guidance, training tutorials, workshops, surgeries, video guides and pilot events starting in May and rolling out throughout the Summer to support members to understand how things work, but for most people, the change will be minimal with all member records and data being transferred from the Vault to the Locker in time for 1st June.



Many clubs and members have asked why England Boxing are introducing The Locker.

Feedback from a wide range of members in recent years – both in the lead-up to and after the publication of our strategy in 2022 – has led to the creation of the Locker as a system that can provide them with most of what they were asking for.

The main features being requested by members were: to embrace technological advancements to upgrade the way we deliver key support services; address issues around unlicensed boxing; and to review the Vault to ensure it provides clubs with added value.

Outside of membership feedback, England Boxing has published an updated Rule Book and independent reports in recent years including the Charles Thomas Report and the East Midlands Region Report.

These reports and Rules were triggered due to the untimely death of Ed Bilbey (a young boxer who died at the end of an EB contest in 2017) and several core governance issues highlighted within the East Midlands and other Regional Associations.

Findings and recommendations within these reports have indicated several key changes that are urgently needed to ensure the safety of boxers, members, clubs, and regions alike.

These recommendations include some that you will recognise, such as the introduction of defibrillators at all clubs and shows, and others that are due to take place over the coming months, such as greater oversight and improvements of gym inspections by EB, and an overhaul of the Vault to include updated / modern approaches of recording boxer’s medical information.

As a result, the Locker has been designed to safeguard the sport and its members by achieving the recommendations outlined in these reports and others.

Several concerning cases of fraud, safeguarding and governance issues have also been reported to and investigated by EB and external agencies in recent months that have highlighted the need for updates and changes to reduce the burden of responsibility currently placed on volunteers within Regional Associations. There is an urgent need to update existing systems and processes for the protection of all EB members, Regions included.

Additionally, several deaths and serious injuries in unregulated/unlicensed boxing in recent years have led to an increased level of concern and desire from several government departments to engage with EB, other home nations, and the British Boxing Board of Control, with a view to restricting the ability for all forms of unlicensed boxing to continue operating by updating relevant legislation.

As a result, the updates and changes taking place as part of the roll-out of the Locker are essential to remove the threats posed by unlicensed boxing in its current forms, and to safeguard participant’s wellbeing.

To this end we have been strongly supported by Sport England who have provided funding to enable us to invest in the research and development of new systems and the strengthening of our key support staff. In return Sport England require us to have the highest levels of governance, integrity and transparency on our Board and throughout our organisation.

Just to be clear, the Board of EB is comprised entirely of volunteers – none of us receive any form of remuneration for our work – and the majority of the Board is of Boxing Directors i.e. those who have been individual EB members for at least three years prior to their appointment. Most of the Board have been appointed in the last three years, and all give up their time freely to make EB it as good as it can be – as is the case throughout this great sport.


Support and consultation

The implementation of the Locker is the highest priority for EB this year. Led by our CEO Jerome Pels and our Head of Operations, Avoen Perryman, we will be undertaking a thorough and comprehensive process of consultation, communication and training. Please keep an eye on our communications, website and social media for further news and updates in relation to the roll-out of the Locker. Many of you have submitted detailed questions that we will be providing answers to in the coming days, and I encourage you to hold us to account and continue to submit your queries.

Between now and January 2025, EB will continue to consult with Regional Associations in relation to the proposed fees for permits and championship entries so that theirs and clubs voices are heard and included before any final decisions are made over the coming months. We are not looking to change the principle of shared fees between EB and Regional Associations, rather we are looking at the best way to administer and responsibly manage the flow of funds into our sport.

We will publish the minutes of our consultations and meetings between now and January 2025 so that you can be assured that any outcomes are done so transparently and with your input.

Thank you for your continued support of amateur boxing.

Richard Brooke

Chair, England Boxing