3 England Athletics

3.7 When will I get my information from England Athletics?

A few weeks after England Athletics receive your affiliation fee from your First Claim Club, England Athletics will send you an information pack which includes a card known as your Competition Licence.  This card has your Universal Runners Number (URN) on it.  In my experience it is the number that you need when entering races and not the card.  The number is increasingly being used by race organisers to clamp down on abuse of the discount on race entry offered to affiliated runners. Keep the card safe.

3.5 Why do I need my URN?

In the past you hardly ever needed the number.  Some race organisers use the runbritain online entry system which is available to any race that obtains its UKA Race Licence through runbritain.

The online entry system asks for a runner’s unique runners number (URN) which is then automatically checked through the England Athletics database to ensure that a runner is genuinely affiliated to the governing body. This is important from a race organiser’s perspective because it ensures that the price difference between affiliated and unaffiliated runners (usually £2 as of 2019) goes to the race.  Organisers are increasingly likely to use this system to check runner’s affiliation status.

3.4 What is a URN or EA number?

The club does not issue any membership number.  Instead we use the member’s URN (Unique Runner’s Number) which is assigned by England Athletics.  Sometimes this is called your EA number.  Your URN does not change from year to year.  In fact, if it does then there is something wrong and you should contact the club’s Membership Secretary.

3.3 How can I change my First Claim Club to Red Rose?

You need to do the following

  1. Resign formally from your previous club. You need to do this by email or letter and you should keep a record of the date of resignation and ideally a copy of your resignation letter or email.
  2. If possible get written confirmation (email or letter) from an officer of your previous club stating that they have no objection to you changing your First Claim Club.
  3. Log onto your account on the England Athletics myATHLETICS portal using your URN as your username and start the change process using the appropriate menu item.
  4. The portal and the form both say you need to send a cheque for £10 payable to England Athletics. If you were last affiliated more than two full seasons ago then it is worth phoning England Athletics to ask if the fee is applicable.  For example, if you last joined your previous First Claim club in May 2013 and they affiliated you then then your affiliation would have lapsed on 31st March 2014  If you then wanted to change your First Claim Club to Red Rose after 1st April 2016 then two full seasons would have passed and the fee should not be charged.  Phone, put your case to them and hope you are successful.
  5. Applications received by England Athletics are often processed in a few days.  If you want more information on timescales then please contact England Athletics directly.
  6. If you do not hear from England Athletics then phone them to understand why. If you do hear from them then please let the club’s Membership Secretary know. England Athletics sometimes tell us but sometimes they forget. If they forget and you do not tell us then we will not affiliate you.

3.2 What are First and Second Claim Clubs?

England Athletics define the rules of competition for athletics clubs generally and running clubs in particular.  Most, but not all, road races in England are run under the England Athletics rules.  Don’t argue, it is just a fact of life.

Under the rules an athlete may compete for up to two clubs.  One of these is known as the First Claim Club and the other optional club is the Second Claim Club.  Only the athlete’s First Claim Club can pay the athlete’s affiliation fee to England Athletics.

You can only have a Second Claim Club if you are affiliated by your First Claim Club.  More on that later.

If you compete in a race in which your First and Second Claim Clubs are in contention then you must represent your First Claim Club.  If the competition does not offer a team prize then you may compete for either club.

This is most important for the Interclub and Cross Country races where there are team prizes but may affect other events.

England Athletics allow a period of 12 months grace from the date your affiliation lapses in the hope your First Claim Club will renew your affiliation.  After this time they will remove your record from both your First and Second Claim Club’s England Athletics Club Portal.