Former British Showjumping (BS) head of sport and performance Iain Graham will take over from Diana Cornish as chief executive of the sport on 1 May.

Mr Graham joined BS in August 2009 from British Eventing (BE), where he had been a technical advisor and then BE regional director for Scotland and the North of England.

He said: “I am absolutely thrilled to have been offered this position and am looking forward to continuing with the progression of our sport during such an instrumental period in the lead up to London 2012 and beyond.

“British Showjumping is going through a period of change at the moment and I feel fortunate to be accepting the post at this time.”

BS chairman Michael Mac added: “We are extremely pleased that Iain has accepted the position.

“Iain’s commitment and focus on delivery is second to none as is his innovative and structured approach to change.”

In a surprise move Mrs Cornish, who took over from Jacky Wood in 2008 (news, 10 July 2008), gave three months’ notice on 1 March.

She cited the differences between her previous roles as chief executive of recruitment company Brook Street Bureau and a board member of a number of FTSE 250-listed companies and being chief executive of a organisation governed by committee as her reason for standing down.