Garrath Williams - Sports Performance & Programme Manager
My name is Garrath Williams, the new Sports Performance & Programme Manager at Sevenoaks School.
An old boy of Wellington School, Somerset I graduated from Thames Valley University in 1997 with a useful BA in History and Business. After a gap year travelling and playing rugby for Washington DC RFC in the then East Coast division of the US Super league, I joined the British Army; attending the Army officer’s Commissioning Course at the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst in 1999. After 12 months at Sandhurst I Commissioned into the Duke of Wellington’s Regiment and was posted to Germany as an Armoured Infantry Platoon Commander. A keen sportsman I took full advantage of the sporting opportunities the Army had to offer; and was lucky to travel to New Zealand on a rugby tour, spend a month in Norway with the Nordic Ski Team as well as playing squash, hockey, cricket and golf to a respectable level. After 4 years service, including time in Kosovo and Canada, I grasped the opportunity of a transfer to the Australian Army, moving there in 2004.
As an officer in the Australian Army I continued to maintain my interest and passion for sport as a player, coach, manager and administrator. It was during my time in and immediately after returning from Afghanistan in 2010 that I was struck by the many similarities between the performance and team culture in both sport and the military, and from there I was determined to maximise my own potential and harness my ambition in this regard.
Alongside a thoroughly rewarding and successful Army career, I was privileged to have been involved in some amazing projects that allowed me to prove the links between the people and environments I enjoyed. These included planning and managing sports tours and events as well as creating and project managing a large international fundraising rugby match in the run up to the 2013 British and Irish Lions Tour of Australia, which raised in excess of £100k for military charities. Additionally to this, I established Endurance Development a small organisation that provided bespoke team, character and leadership development facilitation to elite sport, school and corporate clients.
I was fortunate to spend 10 amazing years in Australia, living in New South Wales, Brisbane and the Gold Coast, and working in far-flung places like the Solomon Islands and Afghanistan. However in 2013, due to unforeseen circumstances, I returned, with my family to the UK, still as an officer in the Australian Army. During this time I became heavily involved in a variety of projects including the International Defence Rugby Championships, supporting with UK specific roll-out of the Australian Government’s Sports Diplomacy policy and the Invictus Games as both a Team Liaison officer for the 2014 London Games and part of the successful bid team for the 2018 Sydney Invictus Games.
After two exciting contracts as the Performance Manager at Sporting Edge and the Ethical Leadership in Sport project manager at the Leadership Trust I was thrilled to be offered the role of Sports Performance & Programme Manager at the school and very much look forward to being part of the team to bring about enduring change in participation and performance in both the school and locally. My concept for sports and performance is simple. Through the provision of world class facilities, the support of motivated, experienced and dedicated staff and the implementation of an adaptive and winning mind-set, potential for sport and performance at Sevenoaks School and the wider community is boundless.