Paul Hodgson is to take over as chairman of British Eventing Board of Directors, from March 1.
Hodgson, who has been vice-chairman of the British Eventing Organisers Association (BEOA) in recent months and is joint organiser of Richmond Horse Trials, replaces Badminton Horse Trials director Hugh Thomas.
BE Chief Executive Mike Etherington-Smith thanked Thomas for stepping in to chair the board since April 2014. “We are hugely grateful to Hugh; he has been a fantastic asset to BE and head office during this time. I am delighted to welcome Paul to the Board. He comes with a wide breadth of experience not just in the equestrian world but also commercially and we are all looking forward to working with him.”
Hodgson has a portfolio of responsibilities which include Richmond Equestrian Centre (REC), a family leisure business, and he works for a Pension Company.
Beyond his love of the sport of eventing, he has been deeply involved in hunting and has been MFH and Field Master of the Bedale Hunt for the last six seasons, 2008 to 2014. His whole family are supporters of the Bedale Hunt. Hodgson’s step-daughter, Chloe Page, competes regularly on the BS circuit.
Before his current responsibilities, Hodgson had a career in the Army, initially as a regular officer and subsequently as a reserve officer.
He said he was committed to the sport of eventing, and was looking to bring a practical and pragmatic approach, “as you would expect from a Scotsman who has lived in Yorkshire for 20 years”.
“I feel privileged to take the chair of the BE Board. This is a fantastic sport which has a wide spectrum of participants, with whom I am looking forward to working and interacting with, from our British teams, to grassroots level riders, to the volunteers, to the owners, to the riders, to the organisers, to our great home team within the office and all our officials in the field,” he said.
“Finally, I wish to pay tribute, thank and recognise Hugh Thomas for his wise contribution as Chairman. He has certainly left some rather large boots to fill!”
The existing board of British Eventing comprises:
- Suzi Cotterill
- Mike Etherington-Smith (ex officio)
- Alex Fox
- Tim Holderness-Roddam
- Guy Prest
- Giles Rowsell
- Nigel Taylor