The British Mountaineering Council (BMC) have just announced on their website that the previously reported - and widely debated - decision to rebrand as 'Climb Britain' has been retracted.
The rebrand as Climb Britain, announced in July (UKC news report), was intended to better reflect the wide remit of the organisation, which has historically been viewed as acting more for climbers than hillwalkers.
However, a heated debate ensued as hillwalkers and other outdoor enthusiasts argued that the name change lent too much weight to climbing - particularly in light of the news of climbing's inclusion in the Tokyo 2020 Olympics shortly before the BMC's announcement - and no longer suggested inclusivity and representation of hillwalkers and individuals undertaking other outdoor pursuits.
Following a period of consultation with members in recent months, including twelve meetings across England and Wales to explain the thinking behind the rebrand - also taking written contributions into consideration from those unable to attend - the National Council has now decided to revoke the decision after a 'strong consensus' against the change became apparent.
However, the BMC have also suggested that 'Climb Britain' may be used in the future for a marketing initiative or promotional campaign.
In a statement released on their website, BMC President Rehan Siddiqui and CEO Dave Turnbull commented:
'We have learnt some very important lessons from this experience – not least that members feel a strong sense of ownership in the BMC and want to be actively involved with major organisational decisions. The BMC is an unusually diverse organisation with a rich heritage and a dedicated workforce of staff and volunteers. We remain strong and healthy and will continue to do our utmost to represent the wide range of activities within our overall ‘mountaineering’ remit – be it hill walking, bouldering, competition climbing, ski mountaineering, indoor climbing, traditional or sport climbing and all aspects of winter mountaineering and ice climbing.
'With special thanks to all those who have contributed their thoughts and opinions over the past two months.'
The BMC's Scottish equivalent, formerly the Mountaineering Council of Scotland, became 'Mountaineering Scotland' in July.
Read the BMC's announcement.