Sport and Recreation Alliance responds to Spending Review 2020

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The Sport and Recreation Alliance welcomes today’s Spending Review 2020 which includes a number of positive announcements for the sport and recreation sector.

These reflect a number of the calls made in our submission to invest more in sports facilities and to put sport and recreation at the heart of the government’s agenda to recover from COVID-19 and level up the country.

Lisa Wainwright, Sport and Recreation Alliance CEO said: “We are pleased to see the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) receive a settlement which provides over £100m of capital investment across sport, culture and heritage as well as £60m for Sport England to invest in participation and community projects and £150m for major events including the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham.

“We are also pleased to see extra money being invested in our schools. While there is no specific mention of the PE and Sport Premium for primary schools, we would like to see confirmation that an allocation of the extra investment will be used to maintain funding of the Premium for 2021/22, which would provide certainty for schools and enable them to plan for next year.

“The announcement that DfE has been allocated money for a potential replacement for ERASMUS+ is also important given the UK’s current contribution to, and involvement in, ERASMUS+ funded sport projects.

“As we have previously called for, it will be important to ensure that sport can benefit from whatever is put in place domestically should the UK not continue to be part of the EU scheme from 2021 onwards.

“The Chancellor’s announcement of various funds designed to drive more investment in improving local communities is also welcome.

“Both the proposed Levelling Up Fund, £4bn for England, and the UK Shared Prosperity Fund of up to £1.5bn appear to provide important opportunities for further investment in sport and recreation.

“We look forward to seeing more of the detail on these funds and in particular how this money might be used to improve local sport and recreation facilities as we know the huge positive social impact this can have both for individuals and communities.

“Lastly we were encouraged to see that the business rates multiplier will be frozen for next year and that government is considering the option of further COVID-19 related support through business rate reliefs which we have previously requested.

“Clearly, the measures announced today cover 2021/22 and we are committed to working with members, sector partners and government on longer term plans ahead of an expected multi-year Spending Review to take place next year.”