Football: Harlow

Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport written question – answered at on 26 April 2021.

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Photo of Robert Halfon Robert Halfon Chair, Education Committee, Chair, Education Committee

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps his Department is taking to support grassroots football in Harlow.

Photo of Robert Halfon Robert Halfon Chair, Education Committee, Chair, Education Committee

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what plans his Department has to increase investment into grassroots football.

Photo of Nigel Huddleston Nigel Huddleston Assistant Whip, The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

The Government is committed to supporting grassroots sport and I welcomed its return on the 29th March.

During the pandemic, Sport England has provided £220m directly to support community sport clubs and exercise centres through this pandemic, via a range of funds including their £35m Community Emergency Fund. This support is available to both men’s and women’s clubs with the latest figures showing £10.5m has already been awarded to over 1,500 football clubs.

Sport England has provided funding to The Football Foundation which has run various funds to help grassroots clubs prepare for the return of football and re-open their facilities once safe to do so. This has included the Club and Pitch Preparation Funds and Matchday Support Fund.

The Government also has an established partnership with the Football Association and the Premier League focused on investment into community facilities, the Government contributing £18m each year. The three-way partnership sees a combined £70m go to new facilities delivered by the Football Foundation each year. Sport England and The FA have worked with the Foundation to produce a local football facility plan for every local authority in the country, mapping out the local investment needs. These can be found at https://footballfoundation.org.uk/local-plans.

Alongside this annual investment, the Government announced at Budget 21 an additional £25m of funding for community sport facilities across the UK.

The Government will continue to support grassroots sport in our local communities.

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