Overseeing the delivery of Liverpool’s major sports events as well as bidding for our next events is the Sport Liverpool Board, an independent board chaired by son of the city, Brian Barwick, whose combined passion and sports knowledge is focused on world class event delivery of world class sports in a world class city.


Brian Barwick - CHAIR

Brian Barwick has enjoyed a distinguished career in major sports broadcasting and administration and is recognised as a leading figure in both industries.

Brian is Chairman of Sport Liverpool and football’s National League and President of the Rugby League World Cup 2021. In 2017, Brian chaired Liverpool’s bid to host the 2022 Commonwealth Games.

Brian has held a number of senior positions including Chairman of the Rugby Football League and Super League (Europe) Ltd, Chief Executive of The FA, Controller of Sport at ITV, and key roles within the BBC, including Head of Television Sport. Brian is a Founding Fellow of Liverpool Hope University's Business School.

Brian studied economics at University of Liverpool and subsequently was a visiting Professor of Strategic Leadership at their Management School. In 2015, Brian was awarded an Honorary Doctorate in recognition of his extensive career in sport and broadcasting.

Tim Banfield

Tim Banfield is owner of TAB Live Consulting Ltd providing a business advisory service, executive mentoring and specialist venue and event consulting services.

With extensive senior executive and board experience Tim is currently acting as business advisor to The ShaperGroup and is an Associate with International Venue Management (IVM) as well as undertaking individual consulting projects.

Tim has vast major venue and events experience having overseen the opening of the 10,000 seat Echo Arena Liverpool and hosting events including BBC Sports Personality of the Year, MTV Europe Music Awards, the St Leger Festival in Doncaster and developing bids for sports events such as the World Netball Cup 2019.

Tim has professional passion for mentoring industry colleagues and a year-round love of outdoor sports.

Clare Briegal

Clare Briegal is CEO of the International Netball Federation (the International Governing Body). As executive lead for the Federation, Clare has driven the development and implementation of the Federation’s strategic plan and the portfolio of events, including the Netball World Cup.

Clare has a commercial background within the chemical industry and consumer durables sector. She has been actively involved in sport as an athlete, official and voluntary administrator in rowing since university. Clare is still competing as a master’s rower. She is a member of the umpires’ panel for the Oxford & Cambridge Boat Race and umpired the women’s Lightweight Boat race in 2019. She was elected Chair of the North West Regional Rowing Council in 2016.

Chris Brown

Chris is a graduate of the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow and having worked in a number of hotels as a General Manager he changed course to work in destination management in 1999 – initially he worked for five years at The Mersey Partnership as Director of Tourism, Director of Operations and interim Chief Executive before taking the role of Chief Executive at Marketing Cheshire, formerly Visit Chester and Cheshire, in 2004. He returned back to Liverpool in 2013 to establish Marketing Liverpool and to promote the city as a first-class destination for visitors, investors and students.

Chris is responsible alongside key city partners in promoting the Liverpool brand nationally and internationally. He is a keen follower of all things Scotland and continues a long held ambition to finally see the country win something.

Jen Falding

Jen has worked as an event and project manager for the last 24 years, working on events such as Rugby World Cup 1999, the Sydney Olympic and Paralympics in 2000 and the 2002 Commonwealth Games in Manchester. From 2003 she worked for Culture Liverpool as part of the bid and delivery of the most successful ever European Capital of Culture in 2008. She also project managed the trilogy of Giant’s visits by world renowned street theatre experts Royal de Luxe; the events welcoming more than 3 million visitors to the city. Most recently she oversaw the delivery of the Opening Ceremony, City Welcome and Fan Park for the Vitality Netball World Cup in 2019. As Strategic Lead for Major Sports Events her role is to work with the Sport Liverpool Board and manage the major sports event team. Jen has been passionate about sport from an early age.

Councillor Harry Doyle

Councillor Harry Doyle is a Liverpool City Councillor, representing the Knotty Ash Ward, and sits in the Mayor of Liverpool’s Cabinet as Cabinet Member for Culture & Visitor Economy.

Harry’s main task involves managing Liverpool’s legacy as European Capital of Culture 2008. His role includes overseeing £400m of cultural regeneration developments and working with key partners on implementing the findings of the UK’s first academic research programme on the impact and future of culture-led tourism.

Outside of Local Government, Harry has a First Class honours degree in Primary Education and Mathematics and is a qualified teacher. Having stood out the classroom in January 2021, Harry now directs Aspire Liverpool, a philanthropic project working with students across the city to support and encourage them to apply to Oxford and Cambridge universities. Harry’s portfolio includes responsibility for sports development and sports facilities, which is a particular passion for him as a regular runner and Lifestyles user.

Mike Kearney

Mike has worked in various sports and leisure management, policy and development positions within Liverpool City Council for more than 35 years. His experience includes, managing large multi-sport facilities, writing sport and facility strategies, project management of leisure capital projects totalling over £100m, managing sports development and sports events teams and managing the current network of Lifestyles Centres. He played an integral part in preparing the cities major sports events bids including 2022 Commonwealth Games, Netball World Cup 2019 and World Gymnastics Championships 2022. Mike has built a strong working relationship with UK Sport and Sport England and was also a key player in building a strategic physical activity and sport partnership with the Liverpool Clinical Commissioning Group.

Eamonn McManus

Eamonn, who is from St Helens, read law at Cambridge University and was a solicitor in London specialising in corporate finance. He then had a twenty year career in investment banking in Hong Kong where he became divisional Chief Executive of HSBC’s Asian investment banking operations and advised on many of Asia’s largest merger and acquisitions and equity capital market transactions, including HSBC’s acquisition of Midland Bank. He was also heavily involved in China’s privatisation programme in the 1990s and was voted one of the world’s top fifty financers in 1994 by Global Finance Magazine. Eamonn returned to England in 2000 when he became a major investor in St Helens RFC and its Chairman. Eamonn has also been an advisor and investor to various private businesses.

Charlotte O’Neill

A former England and Super League netball player, who has previously held senior positions at British Swimming, the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and Rugby World Cup before joining Manchester City FC in 2015. Charlotte oversees the strategic direction and delivery of all academy operations at Manchester City, including, Team Operations, Tours and Tournaments, Education, Performance Lifestyle, Player Support, Accommodation, Administration, Transport, Logistics and Financial Management. Working closely with the Academy Director, Charlotte is a member of the Academy Management Team and in her spare time manages the finish site and trophy presentation each year at the Oxford and Cambridge Boat Race. Charlotte was a board member for the World Taekwondo Grand Prix 2018 and the World Taekwondo Championships 2019.

Professor Philip Wilson

Between 2010 and 2017, as Provost & CEO, he created and led the University Campus Football Business; based at Wembley Stadium, The Etihad, Burnley FC and Real Madrid. In 2017 he joined Conde Nast as CEO of Conde Nast to restructure their global educational operation. He is currently Group CEO (Academic) of Global University Systems, one of the largest education providers with 75,000 students across 30 institutions globally.

His current board positions include the Quality Assurance Agency (Quality & Governance University Regulator), Advisory Committee for Degree Awarding Powers, Burnley FC in the Community, British Wheelchair Basketball NGB and on the Advisory Board of the British Esports Association. He also advises Government on education and its intersection with sport.

He is a member of the Liverpool Athenaeum, Mersey Rowing Club, the Institute of Directors and a Principle Fellow of Chartered Management Institute. He is passionate about sport and the city of Liverpool.

Steve Stuart

Steve Stuart is probably Liverpool’s most experienced corporate financier with a strong background in both public and private sector work. A goal orientated entrepreneur himself with commercial skills that have been stress tested whilst running his own private practice. He strongly connects with the needs of SMEs and business. As well as a member of the Sport Liverpool Board, Steve is chair of the PBS Advisory Board to LCR LEP / Growth platform ; a Business Fellow and member of the Advisory Board at the Business School of Liverpool Hope University and an Ambassador for Professional Liverpool.

He is keen golfer at Hillside Golf Club, an extremely keen Liverpool FC fan and can often be found in the kitchen at home.

Ben Williams

Ben is Commercial Director at The ACC Liverpool Group, operators of M&S Bank Arena, Exhibition Centre Liverpool, ACC Liverpool and ticketing agency Ticket Quarter. As commercial director, Ben’s role includes developing the overall commercial strategy for The ACC Liverpool Group. He oversees the commercial and sponsorship, marketing, sales and ticketing teams across all markets in which the company operates. Ben joined from SMG Europe where, as General Manager, he led the team that launched the first direct Arena in Leeds. Prior to this, he was Commercial and Marketing Director at Manchester Arena and previously a Head of Sponsorship and Promotions for Capital Radio Group.

Ben has worked within the events industry and across large scale venues for many years and has knowledge and experience of working with a multitude of national and international promoters, organisers, sports networks and governing bodies. During this time he has been part of the delivery team for the Fina Short Course World Championships, Tour de France opening ceremony and team presentation and the Netball World Cup.


The Sport Liverpool Board is looking to expand its membership – interested parties should contact jen.falding@liverpool.gov.uk.


If you are interested in bringing your sporting event to Liverpool or want to hear more about the work we do, you can contact us in the following ways:

Email: sportliverpool@marketingliverpool.co.uk
Telephone: 0151 233 5921
Twitter: @LpoolMarketing


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