The Amateur Swimming Association, the governing body for the sport in England, has launched a search for a new chief executive after announcing that long-serving incumbent David Sparkes will focus solely on the same role at British Swimming, which controls the sport at elite level.
Sparkes has served as chief executive of both organisations since 1994, but will leave the ASA later this year to "focus on the sport’s high performance strategy and development alongside its international influence programme" at British Swimming.
He will remain as joint chief executive until his replacement at the ASA can be found.
The ASA said that search will begin immediately in order to focus on increasing participation in aquatic sports as well as supporting the development of talent through its affiliated clubs and a range of county, regional, and national competitions all over England.
Maurice Watkins, chairman of British Swimming, said: "I am delighted that David has agreed to move full time to British Swimming at such an important time for the organisation and elite swimming in the UK. It now makes sense that British Swimming and the ASA, while maintaining a close working relationship, have their own senior leaders to drive the strategic priorities for each organisation. I am confident that this change will benefit swimming at every level in the years ahead."
Sparkes' decision to solely focus on his British Swimming responsibilities comes as aquatic sports in the UK struggle for finances, following disappointing performances at the London 2012 Olympic Games.
Last week, UK Sport, the administration and funding body responsible for financing elite sport in the country, confirmed that it had rejected the appeal by British Swimming over its decision to withdraw all funding for synchronised swimming (£4.3 million [$7.3 million]) and water polo (£4.5 million) because they were no longer considered realistic medal prospects for the 2016 or 2020 Olympics.
Following that decision, Sparkes said it was a "very dark and sad day for British sport - especially for women's sport."