The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport has confirmed that George Lucas, the Chair of Sport Northern Ireland has been appointed to the Board of UK Sport for a three-year term.

UK Sport Chair Dame Katherine Grainger said: “I’m delighted to welcome George to the UK Sport Board. His significant knowledge and experience in both industry and sport will be a huge asset at a hugely important time for our organisation as we prepare to launch our new organisational strategy.

George Lucas said: “I’m looking forward to joining my new colleagues on the UK Sport Board and representing Northern Irish sport and our elite athletes. I’ve always been a strong believer in the power of Olympic and Paralympic sport to inspire the nation and am excited to play my part in helping UK Sport realise this ambition.

“As the Chair of Sport Northern Ireland, I’ve seen first-hand how the achievements of our elite athletes plays a direct role in increasing activity levels at the grassroots, something which is so important for both the physical and mental wellbeing of all in our society.”

George Lucas has operated at Board level for over 30 years. He held the roles of Managing Director of Corus Steel Ireland and Chair of Steel Company of Ireland during a long and successful career in the industry. Formerly Chair of the Health and Safety Executive Northern Ireland (HSENI), he is also a past Chair of the Ulster Branch of Tennis Ireland.

A strong believer in the lifelong benefits from participation in sport and physical recreation, keen sportsman George currently plays tennis for Ireland at Veterans level and has competed in 14 International Tennis Federation (ITF) World Team Championships.