Recognition of governing bodies

The list below details the Recognised governing bodies for each of the Home Countries.  In some cases there is no Recognised governing body for the sport in any of the Home Countries or there is a UK or Great Britain body which has jurisdiction for some or all of the Home Countries. Last updated September 2023.

List of UK Recognised NGBs and Sport List.

Recognition process

Recognition is a process shared by all five Sports Councils (UK Sport, SportScotland, Sport England, Sport Wales and Sport Northern Ireland).

Applications for the Recognition of a sport and a national governing body (NGB) for that sport are dealt with together where applicable. Recognition is subject to application and applications must be approved by all the home country sports councils with the following exceptions:

  • Where an NGB operates in a single home country, recognition of the body requires the approval of that country’s sports council only; and
  • UK Sport also needs to approve applications where an Olympic or Paralympic sport or NGB is being considered.

It is not the role of the sports councils to establish or appoint national governing bodies (NGBs).  NGBs are typically independent, self-appointed organisations that govern their sports through the common consent of their sport.

The aim of the Recognition process is to identify a single lead organisational structure which governs a sport at UK, GB or home country level.  The Recognition criteria focus on establishing if an organisation has achieved a position of pre-eminence within its sport and if it can demonstrate having a reasonable level of organisation and governance. Recognition by the Sports Councils of an NGB is not a guarantee of funding and neither does it mean that we have approved or accredited the quality of its programmes. A sports body’s membership of an International Federation does not automatically mean that the body will become recognised as an NGB by the Sports Councils. Recognition does not bestow any official powers on an NGB to govern its sport.

 Guidance for applicants

If you are considering making an application, you should:

  1. Read the Recognition Policy as this contains essential information which will help you when making your application.
  2. Email us ( to request a pre-application form and a reference copy of the full application form. When contacting us, please include some brief details about your sport and organisation.
  3. When completing the form, you should read and apply the Applicant Guidance.
  4. Your pre-application will be considered by the Sport NI Recognition Panel.

If you are successful at the pre-application stage, you will progress to full application.  Before submitting your full application, you will be required to meet with a representative(s) from the Sport NI Recognition Panel to discuss your application and, following the meeting, you will be provided with the full application form to complete and return.