Jean Pickering Scholarships

Jean Pickering Scholarships

Jean Pickering Olympic Scholarships

Announcement of a New Scholarship supporting five young athletes in their development toward qualification for Team GB, Rio 2016

Jean Pickering was often called the Fairy Godmother of British athletics and served the sport of athletics in so many ways over her lifetime, particularly through her work for the Ron Pickering Memorial Fund.  Jean sadly passed away one year ago today and it is with pride that the fund announces the creation of the Jean Pickering Olympic Scholarships.

This scholarship builds on the success of the Great 12 Olympic Fund, where 21 athletes were selected for support three years ahead of London 2012.  An extraordinary total of nine of the 16 age eligible athletes were chosen for the 2012 British Olympic team, with five of these making their event final and one, high jumper Robbie Grabarz, winning a bronze medal.

The Jean Pickering Olympic Scholarship has been established to support athletes in their progress to Rio2016.  The £62,500 fund will be distributed to the 5 selected athletes over the period to Rio2016.

When selecting the recipients it was very important that the award makes a real difference to their development and focussed on athletes from less financially strong environments or with a specific need to help them get to the next level.  The funds will be used for athlete development and support costs with further support from the RPMF in the form of guidance, advice and mentoring on their individual journeys.

The athletes selected by the fund to receive these Scholarships are:

Zane Duquemin – Shot/Discus

(Coach John Hillier, Club Shaftesbury Barnet/St. Mary’s University)

AW article April 11, 2014

Chris Kandu – High Jump

(Coach John Herbert, Club Enfield & Haringey)

John Lane – Combined Events

(Coach Toni Minichiello, Club City of Sheffield/Sheffield TC/Leeds Metropolitan University)

David Omoregie – Sprint Hurdles

(Coach Mike Guest, Club Cardiff AC)

Sophie Papps– Sprints

(Coach Dan Cossins, Club Windsor Slough Eton & Hounslow)

More information on the Scholarships can be found within the March 27 issue of Athletics Weekly and profiles of each athlete will be available in the ensuing weeks.

“Sport is the most precious commodity

 we have to hand on to the next generation”

Ron Pickering OBE

The RPMF specifically wishes to thank Lady Victoria Leatham and the Drapers Company for its generous support of this project without which this would not have been possible.

It is hoped that further donors, benefactors and corporates might wish to support future Scholarship schemes and the RPMF as a whole with help sponsoring more athletes on their journey in the name of Jean Pickering.  Please contact  in the first instance or go to

“Thank You so much to Jean and the RPMF,

you helped me achieve my dream”.

Robbie Grabarz

Great 12 Olympic Fund beneficiary and Olympic Bronze medallist


“Profit can be seen in the faces of children and in the minds of men

 as well as the pockets of entrepreneurs.”

Ron Pickering OBE