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Clubs invited to bid for even more Olympic legacy cash
With more than 1,300 local community sports groups having already benefited, sports clubs can once again bid for a share of £15 million of National Lottery investment from Sport England’s Inspired Facilities legacy fund.
Already £71 million has been invested in the first four rounds of funding, with more than 530 projects complete and operational. There will also be further rounds to follow after an additional £40 million was committed to extend this hugely popular fund until 2017.
Investment is available to breathe new life into tired facilities that can be unattractive, expensive to run and difficult to maintain, putting these clubs right back at the heart of their local communities. There is also money available to convert existing buildings into venues that are suitable for grassroots sport. Sports groups can find out more and bid at www.sportengland.org/inspiredfacilities.
Sport England Chair, Nick Bitel, said: “Inspired Facilities is one of our most popular funds, showing the importance of good, local sports facilities; not only do they improve the sporting experience of existing users they also help attract new ones. With £15 million of lottery funding available and a further £40 million over coming rounds, there are plenty of opportunities to benefit from this fund.”
One project to benefit from the fund is Wigan Judo Club that received £50,000. Following an arson attack in 2006, which forced the closure of their 40-year-old dojo, the club has been without a permanent home. As a result membership of the club suffered, falling to about a third of what it was in its prime. Following the investment from Sport England the club has been able to renovate an old warehouse to turn it into a permanent home.
Phil Sullivan, Head Coach of Wigan Judo Club said: “It is no exaggeration to say Sport England's support has given Wigan Judo Club a new lease of life. We've turned around from struggling in the doldrums and facing obsolescence to looking forward to the future with eager anticipation.
“It's not just a question of the grants - although these have allowed us to renovate a new facility and create a dedicated dojo and training suite - but the support, insight and motivation provided by the Inspired Facilities team have been a real boost to morale. We're about to place some junior competitors in the National Championships, which would have been unthinkable just one year ago!”
Minister for Sport Helen Grant said: “Sport England’s Inspired Facilities legacy fund is giving a huge boost to community sport and transforming local sports facilities across the country. Well over a thousand sport clubs have benefited from this fund and with £15 million of National Lottery available in the next round this investment will help even more clubs upgrade their facilities.”
Community and voluntary organisations are able to bid for grants of between £20,000 and £50,000, with other organisations such as councils and schools able to apply for grants of up to £150,000.
Applicants whose projects will benefit disadvantaged young people will also be invited to apply for funding from the Thomas Cook’s Children’s Charity, Sport England’s partner for Inspired Facilities.