British Equestrian appoints new Head of Participation

Friday, 21 May 2021

Following a comprehensive recruitment process, British Equestrian is delighted to announce Mandana Mehran Pour as our new Head of Participation. The participation team cover a range of activities, including encouraging new participants to take up equestrian sport as a hobby, working with member bodies to provide a pathway from leisure to sporting activity, coaching qualifications, working with venues and employers, equality and diversity initiatives and working with our funding partners to successfully deliver a wide range of projects throughout the industry in line with strategy objectives.

Mandana brings a wealth of experience in the management of sport, having been Participation Manager for the Lawn Tennis Association for over four years. The role led on the strategic direction of tennis development in London, focusing on unlocking relationships with senior executives within Local Authorities and political leaders to help them manage their tennis assets in parks more effectively.

Previously, Mandana worked for London Sport, where she gained valuable knowledge of working with a range of sporting National Governing Bodies, local authorities and a wide range of community sport organisations. She’s also a Board of Trustee member for Access Sport, a charity which strives to give more children, particularly those in disadvantaged areas, access to a wide range of quality local sport.

On her first day with British Equestrian, she said; “I’m thrilled to have been appointed as Head of Participation for British Equestrian, and I very much look forward to working with the entire team and all the member bodies to help grow participation in the UK. 

“I believe a key focus for all of us should be to support each other in recovering from COVID-19, and to come out even stronger. By collaborating with member bodies, and effectively developing and utilising data and insight, I am hoping that we will maximise existing opportunities and develop innovative approaches to increase participation in our industry and sports.”

Mandana was born in Tehran, Iran to a very sporty family, where she played basketball professionally for over 20 years, including representing her country. A full scholarship to study a masters degree in Sport Management brought her to the UK in 2007.

She commented; “I was very fortunate to have sport in my life from a young age and my parents were great role models for me. Sport brought me happiness, confidence, friendship, and taught me the biggest lessons of my life. I like to live in a world where every child has the opportunity to benefit from sport in some way, and this role will help me bring riding and horses to a new generation of participants.”

British Equestrian’s Chief Executive, Jim Eyre, added; “I am delighted to welcome Mandana to the team, having someone of Mandana’s calibre to head up our participation function is very exciting, and her knowledge of sport will certainly be valuable in our efforts to expand, diversify and inspire at a critical time.  Participation covers more than just riding – our venues, coaching and volunteer network are key, and we look forward working across the industry to capitalise on the opportunity of an Olympic and Paralympic year to help more people discover ponies and horses, including the health and wellbeing benefits time spent with them brings, and all we have to offer as an industry.”