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international women's day: the officials' line - heather clelford

Heather Clelford


10 March 2019 

International Women’s Day is celebrated on 8 March every year and is a focal point in the movement of women’s rights.  This year’s campaign theme of #BalanceforBetter is a call-to-action for driving gender balance across the world. 

Athletics prides itself on being a gender balanced sport and our officials play a major part in achieving this, where currently there are 59% male and 41% female officials in the UK.  In support of International Women’s Day 2019, throughout March, we will feature Officials across the UK to celebrate them and their commitment to athletics.  


Heather Clelford

What is your role as an official?
I am mainly a Field Judge (Level 2) - but have been called upon to Track Judge from time to time.

How long have you been officiating?
46 ½ years

What inspired you to become an official?
My two children were running and our club was desperate for officials!

What would you say to anyone wanting to get into officiating?
It gives you an insight into how a meeting needs many officials for the whole to come together and the satisfaction that you have helped the athletes to achieve their goals.

What has been the highlight of your officiating career?
Every event I have taken part in and even more my six years officiating in disability sport.


Find out more about International Women's Day here

If you want to get involved in officiating, find out more information here