Sport England Funding

Sport England is responsible for distributing the funds from the National Lottery for community sport in England. They have a range of funding programmes that are linked back to their Strategy ‘Towards an Active Nation’.

Full details of all the different funds can be found on their website, where in addition to the details of the amounts available and deadlines there is often included some very good supporting information about why they have any particular fund. Please ensure that you have considered this information before thinking about making an application.

COVID 19 Community Emergency Fund

This aims to deliver immediate funding to those most in need. 

It’s specifically targeted at organisations, including those not currently supported by us, who have a role in supporting the nation to be active but who are experiencing short-term financial hardship or the ceasing of operations due to the impact of coronavirus.

Organisations can apply for grants between £300 and £10,000.  The types of organisations eligible include local sports clubs forced to close at short notice but who are facing ongoing costs around maintenance and utility bills, and voluntary and community sector organisations who deliver or enable sport and physical activity. 


Please contact Living Sport if you need any assistance with an application to this fund  [email protected] 

In normal circumstances there are two funds which we strongly recommended to local groups looking to develop sports and physical activity – one capital and one revenue. We include the basics of these funds below, please also have a look at the Sport England website for the full information. 

Sport England Small Grants

For applications of £300 up to £10 000 for activity to help more people play sport. Importantly it is for new activity, which has to be delivered within 12 months of any award. In addition to including in the application key core information about the organisation – key contacts, constitution, financial reports – you will in your application need to identify – why your project is needed, the impact it will have and how you will deliver the project.

It is recommended to get all the key core information sorted first – you do not want to do the application and then not be able to submit because you have not got all this sorted. And then build your case for answering the different questions about the need, how you will go about delivering, who it will involve, how will you track progress.

Living Sport can help you with your application – talking through what you are thinking of applying for, and making suggestions to build your case, through to reading and providing feedback on your draft application. Depending on what you are thinking of applying for will determine who amongst the Living Sport team is best to speak to. Please contact us on 01487 841559 or [email protected]

We could also write an application on your behalf but there would be a cost for doing this. Please contact us if you are interested.

Remember. The work really starts if you are successful in securing a grant, so make sure that you have got your organisation and any partners fully signed up ready to deliver. And then at 12 months you will be required to report back that you have delivered against what you said you would do, and spent the money appropriately.

Community Asset Fund

This fund is for capital projects, the purpose of which is to improve and protect existing sports facilities or to invest in new and different places that meet the needs of local communities. You will see from the Sport England website that there is massive interest in this fund, with three levels of funding: £1000 to £15 000; £15 000 to £50 000 and exceptionally up to £150 000. So your application will need to be very strong, with the following information expected:

  1. Key core information about your organisation
  2. What your project is and very importantly why is it needed and who will benefit from it
  3. How you will deliver your project, but equally importantly how you will continue to do so over time – how you demonstrate sustainability The Sport England website has two very good guides on their website – the fund guide and a Developing your Idea guide.

Living Sport can advise on applications for the Community Asset Fund, particularly help you to build your evidence base (evidence of need, how it relates to local priorities, consultation with key people and partners) and also read your draft application. Many capital fund applications exceed the amount of any one funder so please see the other information on our website about other capital funding streams.

Advice on capital grant applications are dealt with in the first instance by Simon Fairhall, Chief Executive who can be contacted on 01487 849928 or [email protected]

As noted at the outset there are a good number of other funds. If any of them are of interest please contact Living Sport for advice or assistance.