British Fencing have launched a crowd funding appeal ©British Fencing

British Fencing have launched a crowd funding appeal, #FundFencing, to raise money to support its international programme for the remainder of the season.

All of the money raised will be used to support their senior squad of athletes in training for and competing at the 2017 European Championships and World Championships.

The 2017 World Fencing Championships are due take place in Leipzig in Germany between July 19 and 26.

Tbilisi in Georgia will play host to this year's European Championships between June 12 and 17.

UK Sport recently took the decision to cut funding to British Fencing’s World Class Programme.

A total investment of £345 million ($434 million/€411 million) will be made by UK Sport to 31 Olympic and Paralympic sports for the next Games - £2 million ($2.5 million/€2.3 million) less than a record £347 million ($436 million/€413 million) allocated in the run-up to Rio 2016.

British Fencing was one of five Olympic sports - archery, badminton, fencing, table tennis and weightlifting - however, who failed in their respective bids to overturn UK Sport's decision not to award them any financial support for the Tokyo 2020 cycle.

As a result the current programme will end on April 1 this year, prior to the two major Championships.

British Fencing received £2.5 million ($3 million/€2.9 million) for the London 2012 cycle and £4.2 million ($5.1 million/€4.9 million) for the build up to Rio 2016.

British Fencing’s World Class Programme recently had all its funding cut by UK Sport ©Getty Images
British Fencing’s World Class Programme recently had all its funding cut by UK Sport ©Getty Images

British Fencing has, therefore, decided to focus its efforts on ensuring that the athletes can complete the season and represent Great Britain to the very best of their abilities at these events.

"Given the disappointing news that UK Sport have cut our funding, we must now put in place a realistic plan to support our athletes for the rest of this season," said British Fencing’s chief executive, Georgina Usher.

"For this we will need to raise funds to meet the training and competition costs of the athletes.

"I appeal to everyone in the sport, whether they are participants, volunteers and supporters, and also to everyone who was inspired by our team’s amazing Olympic performance in Rio to pledge what they can."

British Fencing has also launched a new section on their website called the "Supporters Club" which includes links to the #FundFencing crowd funding campaign, British Fencing’s charity page plus instructions for people who would like to campaign for the reinstatement of UK Sport funding.

To support the campaign, click here