£50m legacy fund for sport facilities- 19 Jul 2011 00:00:00
Up to a thousand local sports clubs and facilities will be upgraded thanks to a £50m National Lottery fund launched by Sport England and the minister for Sport and the Olympics, Hugh Robertson MP.
The Inspired Facilities fund is part of the Places People Play legacy programme with the aim of bringing the Olympic and Paralympic Games into communities across the country.
Investment will be available to renovate tired facilities that can be unattractive to sports participants, expensive to run and difficult to maintain.
There will also be money available to convert existing buildings into venues that are suitable for grassroots sport.
The programme has been designed to be as simple and accessible as possible for potential applicants, making it attractive to community groups and sports clubs who may not have received public funding before.
A typical investment might be; a sprung floor that converts an unused hall into a local multi-sport facility; new changing rooms, so away teams no longer need to change in the car park, or new floodlights that mean a facility can be used for many more hours of the day.
Sport England’s chief executive, Jennie Price, said: ‘I hope many of the groups who benefit from Inspired Facilities will be receiving Lottery funding for the first time. We have worked hard to simplify the application process, with a shorter form and a catalogue of ready-made options to choose from’.
‘We want people all over the country to be able to look back on 2012 as the year when their local sports facilities got better, as well as the year the Games came to London’.
At least £35m of the funding will go to community and voluntary organisations, through grants of between £20,000 and £50,000.
The remaining money will be open to a wider group of organisations, including councils and schools, with grants of up to £150,000 available.
Hugh Robertson said: ‘This £50 million fund is a huge boost to community sport. It will transform local sports facilities up and down the country and leave a lasting legacy from London 2012 at a local level’.
Applicants whose project will benefit disadvantaged young people will also be invited to apply for funding from the Thomas Cook’s Children’s Charity from August this year.
The charity is offering grants for sport as part of the Inspired Facilities fund after becoming Sport England’s latest corporate partner.
To make sure the technical elements of the application process don’t put off groups with good projects, Sport England has created a catalogue of typical facilities developments and improvements, based on what sports clubs have told us they need.
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