Government funds sports over winter period

Rugby leagues are among several sports set to benefit from a new government fund to help them get through the winter. Credit: Wikimedia Commons.

Funding of up to £300m expected to protect spectator sports over the coming months

Major spectator sports will receive a total of £300m to protect them over the winter period, the Government has announced.

The funding will largely consist of loans and will support everything from national governing bodies to sporting clubs.  

“Sports clubs are the beating hearts of their communities, and this £300 million boost will help them survive this difficult winter period,” said Oliver Dowden, Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport. 

“We promised to stand by sports when we had to postpone fans returning. We are doing just that by delivering another £300 million on top of existing business support schemes.”

The Government’s funding will be available to rugby unions, horse racing, women’s football and the lower tiers of the National League. Also in line to benefit from the fund are motorsports, tennis, netball, basketball, ice hockey, badminton and greyhound racing. 

Cricket has been left out as the package as the funding is aimed only at sports suffering serious financial losses right now. Country cricket, which relies on matchday revenue, is not scheduled to start until April. 

The Government has stated that the funds have been allocated based on a needs-based assessment. The funding process has been overseen by an independent decision-making board and is supported by Sport England.

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