Sport England offers nearly £200m of coronavirus grant funding

Its fund is worth £195m to help sporting organisations deal with both short and long-term effects of the pandemic

Sport England has made almost £200m of grant funding available to support sports organisations through the coronavirus outbreak.

The grant-maker said it had established a fund worth up to £195m to help sport and physical activity organisations deal with the short-term and long-term effects of the pandemic.

The funding includes a £20m Community Emergency Fund, which will offer grants of up to £10,000 to clubs and community organisations and is open for applications with immediate effect.

Sport England said it would provide £115m of “rollover” funding into 2021/22 to provide added financial certainty to more than 100 established funding partners.

It said this would be for select funding partners that had funding commitments due to end on or before March next year.

The organisations are likely to include established governing bodies and partners that play key roles in helping the nation stay active.

Sport England said it would also provide £55m to fund new and innovative ways to keep people active and help organisations get back on track when the current social restrictions are over.

The final £5m would be reserved for existing partners to bid for if they are facing specific financial difficulty as a result of the crisis, it said.

Sport England added that it would consider requests to release current funding to grantees more quickly.

Tim Hollingsworth, chief executive of Sport England, said the sports sector was facing “extremely challenging times” because events were being cancelled and clubs and community groups were not operating.

“As the body responsible for the growth of sport and physical activity at a grass-roots level, we have an important role to play in ensuring that we support those with short-term cash-flow concerns and immediate loss of income, as well as those facing medium and long-term survival challenges and financial difficulties,” he said.

“We want the sector not just to come through this crisis, but also to be in a position to thrive again in the future, and this package will ease the pressure on a huge number of the organisations that are central to that.”

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